Joel Schlessinger M.D.

Published works by Joel Schlessinger M.D.

Joel Schlessinger MD shares how to properly care for human bites

Joel Schlessinger MD shares how to properly care for human bitesMany human bite cases are caused by assaults and often involved in the judicial system. Although these injuries are relatively uncommon, it is important that they receive clear, concise and complete care and documentation. Dr. Joel Schlessinger’s expert medical advice is featured in an article about human bites where he discusses the appropriate care and plan of action when dealing with a human bite.

Approximately 10-15% of wounds caused by human bites become infected. Most human bites occur on the hands, an area where wounds are commonly prone to infection. Human bite wounds are also rich in saliva that contains as many as 100 million organisms per milliliter with over 190 species likely to cause infection.

Dr. Joel Schlessinger also points out that it’s important to understand the transmission of disease through human bites. Many diseases like hepatitis B, hepatitis C, herpes simplex virus, syphilis and tuberculosis have been transmitted through bites.

If you are ever bitten by a human, it is important to recover any avulsed tissue. Wrap these parts in sterile gauze and place in a plastic bag that should then be submerged in ice water. Immediately go to a hospital for proper care.

After appropriate anesthesia is applied to the patient, the team of doctors will cleanse the area and investigate for tendon injuries. A tourniquet will be applied and additional steps taken if the wound is serious. If not, outpatient care includes careful cleansing, application of antibiotics, bulky dressing and/or splint.

The most important thing to remember when it comes to human bites, Dr. Joel Schlessinger points out, is that you must seek medical attention immediately. Since these wounds are prone to infection and serious injury, it is pertinent that it receives proper care.

To learn more about human bites, read the entire eMedicine article, “Human Bites,” here.

Have you ever experienced a human bite? Tell us about it in the comments.

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