A wound is defined as an injury to the body that typically involves a laceration or breaking of a membrane (such as the skin).
The medical community further classifies wounds to describe how long they may last, and whether they are infected by bacteria.
Skin wounds are generally described in one of five categories. Cooperstown Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation will describe each one.
An incision is a clean break in the skin caused by a sharp object. Cutting yourself with a knife, a pair of scissors and glass are examples of incision wounds. Doctors also make incisions when performing surgery. These wounds tend to heal faster because they are clean, which means they have smooth skin edges.
This is defined by tissue tearing during an injury. Bony parts of your body – knees and elbows – are common areas to get a laceration. Wounds caused by being hit with a blunt object are also lacerations. Skin edges are jagged, so healing time will be prolonged, and scarring will be more prominent than in incisions.
Abrasions are otherwise known as scrapes. These can be serious for someone falling off a bicycle or motorcycle (known as road rash), as they can be deep or widespread. Scarring can occur, but medical intervention like a skin graft may be necessary, depending on the severity of the abrasion.
This occurs when the skin is torn from the tissue beneath it. This can occur in the knee when a ligament, tendon, or joint can be torn from the bone. Skin avulsion is common in animal bites, motorcycle accidents, and industrial equipment accidents.
The difference between a puncture wound and an incision is that a puncture would is deeper than it is wide. This usually occurs on the feet or hands, when pressing down on something like a nail or a thumbtack. Animals can also cause puncture wounds. These wounds are also associated with tetanus, which is why you should stay current on your tetanus immunization.