Cycling Road Rash Injuries

Larissa Roux, MD FRCP Dip Sport Med, MPH, PhD, discusses Road Rash Injuries Cycling

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Larissa Roux, MD FRCP Dip Sport Med, MPH, PhD, discusses Road Rash Injuries Cycling
Video transcript

Featuring Dr. Larissa Roux, MD, MPH, PhD, CCFP, Dip Sport Med

Duration: 1 minute, 57 seconds

Road rash simply refers to an abrasion of the skin that results from falling off your bike onto a hard surface.

There really are no major features other than the abrasion itself, however one must make sure that there is no accompanying injury and that there is no laceration, so the first thing one has to do is clean the wound.

Whenever you have an abrasion, you are predisposed to infection, and cleaning the abrasion with water and a mild soapy solution is very important. If this reveals a laceration, providing direct - or applying direct pressure to the laceration to stop the bleeding is important.

If the bleeding doesn't stop within a reasonable period, like 15 minutes, then this laceration may require further treatment by a primary care physician, which would include suturing. Once the abrasion is cleaned from any debris it's really important to keep it moist and covered with a semi-permeable membrane of some sort. There are many options available on the market today.

Dressings should be changed every few days, and signs of infection such as redness, pain, should be watched for – or fever. In the case of any of these symptoms you should certainly consult your primary care sports physician.

It's also important to note that stepping on a rusty nail is not the only thing that puts you at risk for tetanus. Any exposed flesh can predispose you to this important infection, resulting in involuntary muscle spasm.

If you have any further questions regarding road rash or you're uncertain of your tetanus immunization status, please consult a family physician.

Presenter: Dr. Larissa Roux, Sports Medicine Physician, Vancouver, BC

Local Practitioners: Sports Medicine Physician

This content is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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