Conversations with Clinicians- Wound Care at Home

For today’s Conversations with Clinicians, Cheryl Hutton, a wound, ostomy and continence nurse (WOC nurse) with CHC Solutions, Inc., answers common questions and dives into what you need to know about wound care at home.

“Getting a wound at home is very common. Unfortunately, people are not always aware of when to seek care. It is good to be educated about the subject so you can plan ahead and be ready in case you get injured,” says Hutton.

What are some of your concerns about wound care during COVID?

One of my biggest concerns is that people do not always know when to see the doctor. Sometimes people think they can treat every type of wound at home. In our current situation, some people do not want to leave their house because of a fear of getting COVID. Therefore, they are putting some important things off.

When does a wound automatically need to be seen by a doctor?

  • If the wound is a quarter inch or more deep
  • The bleeding does not stop easily with direct pressure
  • When oozing continues after about 20 to 30 Minutes
  • If it is a crush injury
  • You have not received a tetanus shot in 10 years and become injured

What are some signs of infections?

If you are experiencing these symptoms a few days after you were wounded, there may be an infection. Call your doctor.

  • Puss is coming out of the wound
  • The wound smells bad
  • The wound is bleeding through the bandage before you are scheduled to change it
  • The skin around the wound looks red and tender

How do you take care of small wounds at home?

Make sure that you are removing loose debris, washing, disinfecting and using a bandage.

What if you notice your wound changing over time?

Sometimes a wound changes as a result of infection or cellulitis. See a doctor if your wound has a foul odor, purulent drainage, debris you can’t get out, an increase in drainage, swelling or if your lymph nodes are swollen near the wound.

Do you have any general wound care tips?

  • Sometimes it is helpful to put ice on a bruise
  • Do not remove a scab on a wound because this could cause infection
  • As your wound is healing, it is especially important that you wear sunscreen if you are in the sun
  • Check to see if your doctor or wound care physician performs telemedicine visits

After conversing with Cheryl, we now know what to look for and what to do with our wound care at home. It may be a strange time for us to leave our homes, but it may be necessary for you to go and see a doctor.

Send us questions you would like to have answered or topic suggestions for our next Conversations with Clinicians to or email our WOC nurse, Cheryl Hutton, at Check back next month for our next segment!

To learn about why a wound is not healing visit, or to learn about nutritional tips that promote healing visit

*Disclaimer: Any health and wellness content presented is for general informational purposes only. Such content is not intended to replace or serve as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.