I’m sorry for the late posting today! I’ve spent the last day taking care of the little one, who managed to split his lower lip at daycare yesterday. Apparently, he was pushing a push toy outside and fell. He has a small cut inside his mouth, and another small cut on the outside of his lower lip.
I couldn’t tell if he needed stitches or not, so I spoke with the nurse at the pediatrician’s office twice. She said to check if the skin was coming together, or if there was a space. Unfortunately, I really couldn’t tell.
She told me that they couldn’t take care of my son before they closed, so I took him to the pediatric urgent care in the evening. I have to say, their services are worth every penny of the $75 facility fee. There’s a much shorter wait compared to the emergency room, and they have almost all of the resources they need.
The doctor saw us pretty quickly and said she thought the cut was on the borderline for needing stitches. She wanted to consult with a plastic surgeon, so we had to wait around quite some time for that. The first one she called never called her back, but the second one actually came over from his office. Apparently he was working late, and when he got the page he decided to drop in instead of doing a phone consult.
The plastic surgeon checked the cut and recommended stitches, because the cut is right at the Vermilion border, or where the lip meets the skin. He explained that stitches would make sure the skin lines up properly when it heals. I won’t go into the details of how the stitches were put in (mostly because I tried not to look), but my son did great.
Today, I took him to his pediatrician just to make sure everything looked right, which it does. His regular pediatrician said he was glad the stitches were put in because of the location of the cut. So, apparently it’s important to stitch up cuts that are located at the Vermilion border to ensure proper healing. If nothing else, at least I get to pass along that little nugget of information – although I do hope you’ll never need it!
The stitches will stay in for 5 to 8 days and in the meantime, I am supposed to keep them “greasy” with an antibiotic ointment. I am also not to let a clot or scab form on the outside, but if one appears, I am to remove it with hydrogen peroxide. My skin crawled when the plastic surgeon gave me those instructions, but a mom’s gotta do what a mom’s gotta do. The nurse was kind enough to warn me that the hydrogen peroxide will foam when it comes into contact with the blood. I’m glad she told me because I probably would have freaked out the first time it happened.
So, thus far my boy’s doing okay but I do find that I sound even more like a broken record than usual: Take your hands out of your mouth. Keep your hands away from your face. Gentle!
Alas, I’m sure this won’t be our last trip to urgent care!
*Previously: Our First Trip to Urgent Care
Image credit: Little MD kit at Amazon.com.