k. Observe Skin and Wound Site. Observe the skin for signs of irritation
(redness, rash, and/or swelling). Inspect the wound for:
Pus (usually yellow fluid; may be blood-tinged, greenish, or brown).
Putrid (bad) odor.
Condition of suture (joining of edges of wound).
Condition of drains.
CLEANSING A WOUND
Cleanse the wound if order indicates. Dip each cotton-tipped applicator or gauze
sponge into a saline solution before using it to clean the wound. The cleansing strokes
are different for linear wounds than for circular wounds.
a. Cleansing a Linear Wound. The steps for cleansing a linear wound are
shown in figure 4-6.
Figure 4-6. Linear wound.
(1) Stroke 1. Swab (wipe) the area directly over the wound with a single
stroke. Discard the applicator (sponge) into the container for contaminated wastes.
(2) Stroke 2. On the patient's right side, swab (wipe) the area next to the
wound with a single stroke. Discard the applicator (sponge).