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First AidInfectious DiseasesViral Infections

Treatment and Management of Rabid Dog Bite, First Aid for Dog bite Victim

First Aid for the dog bite victim

First Aid for Dog Bite Victim

Victim of rabid dog, cat or bite of any other animal that can transmit rabies should be brought to the emergency room immediately. In the emergency room a doctor, nurse or health care attendant should follow the following steps.

1. Reassurance and Counseling

The victims of an animal bite are often fearful and worried. Especially when they think or know that the animal which has bitten was infected with rabies. Rabies is a deadly disease indeed. So reassurance and counselling should be done. Handle them with care, soothe the child and show him care and gently ask him to allow you to handle his wound. Tell him that you are going to wash the wound and vaccinate him and the chance of getting rabies will be very low.

2. Assess the number, location and depth of the wound

Adults are usually cooperative and will tell you the number and location of the wound with accuracy. In the case of children, you must be careful. They may not cooperate due to fear. Undress them and examine carefully for scratches and wounds. Measure the size and depth of the wound.

3. Wound Washing.

Wash the wound through with water and soap. Wash the wound again if it had been washed elsewhere. Remove all the dirty oil, chilly and turmeric, as the people of rural areas usually apply these things on the wound. Flush the wound and do deep cleansing. Soap should be used as it denatures the virus protein and helps to minimize the infection. If the wound is deep, used saline filled syringe to wash the wound. After thorough cleaning for 10-15 minutes, pyodine should be applied. Don’t apply tincture iodine as it causes burning of tissues. Don’t suture the wound and cover it with sterile gauze until further decision. If the wound is too deep or if a very deep wound is present on the face then loose sutures can be applied. Proper suturing should be done 2-3 days later.

4. Wound categorization and Vaccination.

Proper wound washing, decreases the incidence of transmission of rabies by 33%. Once the wound is washed, categorize and wound and decide according to the category of the wound.
For Categories of wounds and management Click Here

Guidelines for human rabies prevention in Pakistan by Dr. Naseem Salahuddin

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