Clinical Reference Systems: Pediatric Advisor 10.0
Bleeding into the skin from damaged blood vessels causes a
black-and-blue mark, which we call a bruise. Because the
skin is not broken, there is no risk of infection. Bruises
usually occur after an injury caused by blunt objects.
Unexplained bruises can indicate that a child has a bleeding
tendency (exception: "unexplained" bruises on the shins are
usually not a sign of a bleeding tendency because people
commonly bump this area and then forget that they bumped
Apply ice to the bruised area for 20 to 30 minutes. No
other treatment should be necessary. Give acetaminophen
or ibuprofen for pain. Don't use aspirin because it may
prolong the bleeding. After 48 hours apply a warm
washcloth for 10 minutes three times a day to help the
skin reabsorb the blood. Bruises clear in about 2
- Blood blisters
Do not open blood blisters because it will increase the
possibility of infection. The blisters will dry up and
peel off in 1 to 2 weeks.
For information on treatment of bruised bone or muscle, see
Bone, Muscle, and Joint Trauma.
CALL YOUR CHILD'S PHYSICIAN IMMEDIATELY IF:
- Your child develops new bruises AND you don't know what