The treatment of a skin foreign body depends on the foreign body, depth of penetration, and the anatomic location of the injury. Treatment for a skin foreign body may include wound care, removal of the foreign body, wound repair, antibiotics, and tetanus vaccination. Surgery may be required, in order to remove the foreign body or to repair damaged tissue.
Specific treatment for a skin foreign body may include:
- Wound irrigation
- Rinsing the wound
- Wound cleansing
- Wound exploration
- Removal of a foreign body from the wound
- Wound debridement:
- Removal of dead or dirty tissue
- Laceration repair:
- To treat infected wounds or prevent infections
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications for pain:
- Ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil, Nuprin, NeoProfen)
- Ketoprofen (Actron, Orudis, Oruvail)
- Naproxen (Anaprox, Naprosyn, Aleve)
- Narcotic pain medication:
- Tetanus vaccination
- Surgery for skin foreign bodies:
- To remove foreign bodies or repair damaged tissue.
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Splinter Questions For Doctor
The following are some important questions to ask before and after the treatment of a skin foreign body.
Questions to ask before treatment:
- What are my treatment options?
- Will I need surgery?
- What are the risks associated with treatment?
- What are the complications I should watch for?
- How long will I be on medication?
- What are the potential side effects of my medication?
- Does my medication interact with nonprescription medicines or supplements?
- Should I take my medication with food?
Questions to ask after treatment:
- Are there any medications or supplements I should avoid?
- When can I resume my normal activities?
- When can I return to work?
- Will I need to see my doctor for a checkup?
Continue to Splinter Home Care
- Nassif JM, Gorczyca JT, Vanarthos WJ. Unrecognized foreign body in the hip joint. J Orthop Trauma. 1996;10(3):216-9. 
- O'Dell ML. Skin and wound infections: an overview. Am Fam Physician. 1998 May 15;57(10):2424-32. 
- Vincent A, Jenkins DW. Retained digital foreign body after a pellet gun injury. J Am Podiatr Med Assoc. 2000 Feb;90(2):103-6.