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Page:Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management.djvu/2086

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Gun-shot wounds. Treatment.—If a stimulant is necessary, give a teaspoonful of spirit of sal-volatile in water. Remove pieces of clothing, wadding, or bits of paper that may be found in the wound, then bathe it with Sanitas and water, carbolic acid and water, or Condy's Fluid and water, and foment as in the case of perforating wounds. (See above.)

Poisoned wounds may result from a number of causes, such as stings of insects, snake-bites, the bites of rabid animals, etc.

Dog-bites.—When any one is bitten by an animal supposed to be mad, unless the actual fact of the animal's madness is already known, it should be kept and carefully watched; if it is found not to be suffering from rabies, no ultimate harm will result to the patient. The rabies will soon make itself apparent, for, if mad, the dog will be seen snapping at imaginary objects, with a copious flow of saliva from the mouth, and a convulsive closing of the jaws.

Treatment.—The wound should be thoroughly cleaned with carbolic lotion 1 in 20. It should then be cauterised with lunar caustic or a red-hot wire, and bandaged up. Stimulants, such as the spirits of sal-volatile in teaspoonful doses, may be given every 2 or 3 hours.

Snake-bites. Bites received from serpents abroad are often exceedingly formidable injuries, and may be followed by death within a few hours, so that prompt action is necessary.

Treatment.—The part should be at once sucked. A very tight bandage should then be applied just above the wound, either by means of a strong elastic band, a leather strap, or a handkerchief twisted tightly with a stick. The wound should then be freely cauterised by means of a red-hot wire or a red-hot cinder; or the part may be cut out with a knife; or caustic, such as nitrate of silver, may be applied; a red-hot wire is, however, the best. Stimulants, especially preparations of ammonia, must be freely given. A teaspoonful of ammonia should be put into a wineglassful of water, and the patient given 1 tablespoonful every quarter of an hour. If those present are afraid to suck the wound, a wineglass, into which a piece of burning paper has been put to exhaust the air, should be inverted over it. Treatment by anti-toxins has been successfully used.

Stings.—If the sting still remains in the wound, it must of course be removed; then some alkaline lotion should beapplied to the part, such as a little ammonia water, liquor potassae and water, or bicarbonate of soda and water. The pressure of a hollow key will often force a sting sufficiently above the skin to allow of it being seized with tweezers.