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Cut at the arm.

Discussion in 'Research' started by Bianca, Dec 18, 2020.

  1. Bianca

    Bianca Dreamer

    so i am currently working on my first novel. My MC gets in a fight pretty early and get a cut at the arm. The cut is deep enough, that it bleeds but not deep enough that it requires stitches. He got a painkiller and the affects of that are now wearing of.
    My questions: How would the cut affect. the movements of his arm? what he can do? How does it feel?
    I hope somebody can help me
  2. Prince of Spires

    Prince of Spires Maester

    In my opinion, a cut that doesn't require stiches wouldn't really require painkillers. It's more a minor annoyance than anything else, unless it's a very long cut. Even a shallow cut that does require stiches can be suffered with little to no painkillers, though there you might like some.

    The cut would be felt if the character moves his arm fast and / or stretches it. Basically anything that moves the skin where the cut is will make the character feel the cut. At first it can be a bit a stinging feeling, but it shouldn't take more than a few days to disappear completely. If your character moves his arm too far then there is a chance of opening up the cut again, though, with a cut that doesn't require stiches, the probability of that would be fairly low, unless it's a large cut. It might make the character a bit hesitant the first one or two days to move his arm much, but he should be able to push through that if needed. And adrenalin could make him completely ignore it.
    Demesnedenoir and Nighty_Knight like this.
  3. Bianca

    Bianca Dreamer

  4. Chasejxyz

    Chasejxyz Sage

    What caused the cut and where is it on the arm? Papercuts rarely, if ever, bleed but because the edge is so "sharp" it really, really hurts! I've worked in a print shop and have gotten some...very long paper cuts. They hurt really badly and if there was any sort of topical anesthetic (or if I had access to and didn't know the bad stuff about opiates) then I would probably want to take that, especially if I still had a lot of work to do. But at that job I've also gotten various cuts on my hands from other things, but slapping a bandaid on them was good enough and I went about my day with no further issues.
  5. Bianca

    Bianca Dreamer

    The wound is caused by a dagger. Its on the top of the arm about where you would get a vaccination, a little below that
  6. Mad Swede

    Mad Swede Sage

    Depends how deep it is. If the cut is so shallow that it doesn't need stitching then the only real risk is from infection. It may hurt and bleed a bit, particularly if your character stretches their arms doing things like lifting or swinging their arms, but otherwise it will probably only be a minor inconvenience.
    Nighty_Knight likes this.
  7. Bianca

    Bianca Dreamer

    Thank you
  8. TJPoldervaart

    TJPoldervaart Minstrel

    If it doesn't require stitches, I agree with the comments above that it would be a small nuisance, but nothing bad. The adrenaline would make the character not notice it at first, and later it should heal quickly.

    There is one exception, and that would be if the wound got infected. This would be a far greater risk in a medieval setting than a modern one, since they didn't have the same understanding of bacteria be do know. In the middle ages, even a scratch could be deadly or debilitating if the wound got effected. Then again, cleaning it with clean water (boiled water) would take care of this.
  9. Bianca

    Bianca Dreamer

    thank you. Its a modern setting. So he should be pretty safe
  10. Nighty_Knight

    Nighty_Knight Minstrel

    Agreed with what others have said. Add to that, from personal experience working with sheet metal at a former job, it will bleed a lot more than people think. I used to get my fingers and forearms cut often from the sheet metal, while making printing dies, and I would rush over to the med kit to patch myself up, bad enough I still have a few scars but never needed stitches. After I would wash myself off and have to clean the trail of blood leading back to my work area.
  11. others have said: but what "requires" stitches and what does not is pretty vague. in the hospital they might stitch up a little cut just because... why not? or if you are not near a hospital you may have a huge bleeding gash - and as long as its not life threatening, you just bind it as best you can and deal. better to have stitches but it will heal without them if you are careful, just take longer.

    I think the answer is not in the wound itself, but what you want for the character and scenes- do you want it to be just a tiny nick and no problem, or do you want them to have to be careful and limited in use- to add tension etc. really its up to you.
  12. Rosemary Tea

    Rosemary Tea Sage

    By painkillers, do you mean oral painkillers, aspirin or similar? Those only work on achy kinds of pain. To be of any use for the pain of a cut, the cut would have to have torn into muscle. That's NOT a minor cut that doesn't require stitches. If he's badly bruised as well as having a minor cut, he could be taking a pain reliever for the bruising, but more likely, he'd apply a salve to the bruised places, or, if feasible in the world you've built, ice.

    If his cut is just a skin wound and not that serious, he could get some relief by putting a balm on it: something designed to fight infection, aid the healing, and soothe. With that, you don't really notice a wear off, but there will probably be a moment when you want some more. Like when you're changing the bandage.

    If this isn't a modern setting (and possibly even if it is), the balm would be an herbal salve. Chamomile, yarrow, calendula, or a blend of any or all of those would work quite well.

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