Penetrating Injuries To The Liver Or Spleen
WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW:
- Penetrating injuries are also called piercing injuries. These may be caused by anything that goes through the skin and into the body. Piercing injuries to the liver or spleen may cause a tear, cut, or bruise to the organ. Piercing injuries may also result in a severely damaged organ and internal bleeding. The liver and spleen are large organs located at the upper area of the abdomen (stomach). Gunshot or stab wounds to the abdomen may injure these organs. Shrapnel, spikes, broken bones, or other pointed and sharp objects may also cause piercing injuries.
- Signs and symptoms may include bleeding or pain and tenderness in your abdomen. Bruising, swelling, or burns on the injured area may also be seen. A complete check-up of your body, including your skin, chest, back, and abdomen, may help diagnose piercing injuries. Imaging tests that take pictures of your abdomen, such as x-rays, ultrasound, and computerized tomography (CT) scan, may be done. Treatment will depend on your symptoms, condition, and how severe your injuries are. Sometimes, watchful waiting may be all that is needed for mild injuries. You may have surgery or other procedures to treat bleeding or more severe organ injuries. With proper care and treatment, your liver or spleen may heal over time, and serious problems may be prevented.
AFTER YOU LEAVE:
Take your medicine as directed.
Call your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.
Ask for information about where and when to go for follow-up visits:
For continuing care, treatments, or home services, ask for more information.
Rest when you feel it is needed. Slowly start to do more each day. Return to your daily activities as directed.
For more information:
Having a piercing injury to the liver or spleen may be hard. You and those close to you may feel scared, sad, or angry. These are normal feelings. Contact the following for more information:
- American College of Surgeons
633 N. Saint Clair St.
Chicago , IL 606113211
Phone: 1- 312 - 2025000
Phone: 1- 800 - 6214111
Web Address: http://www.facs.org
CONTACT A CAREGIVER IF:
- You have a fever.
- Your skin becomes itchy, swollen, or has a rash.
- You have chest pain or trouble breathing that is getting worse over time.
- You have any questions or concerns about your condition, treatment, or care.
SEEK CARE IMMEDIATELY IF:
- You have pain in your abdomen or it feels more full or tender than normal.
- You feel dizzy all of a sudden or are vomiting.
- You have a fast heartbeat.
- You suddenly feel lightheaded and have trouble breathing.
- You have new and sudden chest pain. You may have more pain when you take deep breaths or cough. You may cough up blood.
- Your arm or leg feels warm, tender, and painful. It may look swollen and red.
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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.