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Road Rash Cure - my experience

Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Road Rash Cure - my experience

Old 07-29-09, 10:40 PM
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RJBTrek
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Road Rash Cure - my experience

I crashed in a Cat4 race on July 6th and ended up with quite a bit of road rash; lower leg, hip, back, butt, and arm. I used this opportunity to compare road rash treatments. This is based my experience and I’m not providing medical advice.

Band-aid wound wash. This stuff does not sting and has an analgesic to reduce pain. Soak a gauze pad with the stuff and place on the wound for 5 min then clean the wound. MUCH less pain.

I used three different treatments, 1) Tegaderm dressing, 2) non-stick gauze dressing with Neosporin, and 3) New Skin liquid bandage.

I have one word..TEGADERM. I initially used this only on my leg and hip but after 4 days switched from the other two treatments on my back and arm to Tegaderm. Tegaderm is a clear sheet patch that is applied directly over the wound. It breathes and remains in place even when you shower. Walgreen’s offers this over-the-counter but the patches are small. YOU CAN ORDER larger sizes at the pharmacy, which I had to do. It comes in a pack of ten. I left the patch on for 5 days and then replaced it. My back took 14 days to heal so I used two patches (started the patch 4 days after the crash). The wounds did not scab over and showering was much less painful.

Non-stick pad and Neosporin…this was ok but allowed the wound to dry out even though I changed the dressing twice a day. You can’t shower with it either.

New Skin…Never again! The stuff stings when applied and requires a couple applications during the day. When it starts to peal, you need to remove it and apply more. This process sucks since you have to apply more New Skin to “melt” the existing New Skin and then wipe it off the wound. This is Painful! Plus the stuff stings!

My experience…use Tegaderm. It’s more costly but works great.

Edit:
I did have fluid build up under the Tegaderm dressing. To remove the fluid I would smooth the patch down forcing the fluid out the bottom of the patch. I had less issues with fluid build up on wounds I first covered with absorbent non-stick gauze for the first several days.

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Old 07-29-09, 10:57 PM
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Everyone seems to love tegaderm, but when I tried it I had a problem. It seems pretty much completely non-absorbant, so it ended just being like a giant fluid sac blister. Eww, that sounds gross.

Anyway, how is everyone else dealing with that?
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Old 07-29-09, 11:34 PM
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I work with a wound care team. Although I dont need the stuff, I have gotten a few goodies. There are tons of different dressings that will soak up exudate to prevent those blisters. not sure if you can get it over the counter, but I would think duoderm would work... or place any kind of alginate filler or pad under the tegaderm (although I have op-site, which is a different name brand).
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Old 07-30-09, 12:06 AM
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Originally Posted by recursive View Post
Everyone seems to love tegaderm, but when I tried it I had a problem. It seems pretty much completely non-absorbant, so it ended just being like a giant fluid sac blister. Eww, that sounds gross.

Anyway, how is everyone else dealing with that?
You could try this from Wikipedia:

"If possible, leave a tiny crease or "channel" somewhere to facilitate draining. You can do this by using a Qtip or similar to "draw" a small channel with Vasoline from the edge of the wound to the outer edge of the Tegaderm before applying the dressing to the skin. This allows the liquids to drain from the wound. You might also want to put a small bit of gauze or other absorbent materials at the end of the channel to catch the draining liquid."
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Old 07-30-09, 07:19 AM
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Originally Posted by recursive View Post
Everyone seems to love tegaderm, but when I tried it I had a problem. It seems pretty much completely non-absorbant, so it ended just being like a giant fluid sac blister. Eww, that sounds gross.

Anyway, how is everyone else dealing with that?
I did have fluid build up under the Tegaderm dressing. To remove the fluid I would smooth the patch down forcing the fluid out the bottom of the patch. I had less issues with fluid build up on wounds I first covered with absorbent non-stick gauze for the first several days. I did not let the fluid collect too long. That was the one aspect of the Tegaderm that is an issue. Even with this, my wounds healed faster and cleaner with Tegaderm. The areas I used New Skin followed by a non-stick gauze dressing still have some scabbing.
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Old 07-30-09, 07:22 AM
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I believe you are supposed to use Tegaderm once the oozing stops, non-stick gauze and neosporin till then. That's what I do.
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Old 07-30-09, 09:06 AM
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Agreed with the tegaderm / similar process.

my recap:

A. do not let the wound dry.
B. keep it covered with the dressing, or whatever cream you have access to facilitate A.
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Old 07-30-09, 09:48 AM
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Originally Posted by fordfasterr View Post
Agreed with the tegaderm / similar process.

my recap:


A. do not let the wound dry.
B. keep it covered with the dressing, or whatever cream you have access to facilitate A.
this.
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Old 07-30-09, 09:53 AM
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Can I be a total dummy and ask why letting the wound dry is a bad idea? Isn't this the natural way of healing? ie scabbing etc?
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Old 07-30-09, 09:59 AM
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Originally Posted by dolfinack View Post
Can I be a total dummy and ask why letting the wound dry is a bad idea? Isn't this the natural way of healing? ie scabbing etc?
i'm not a doctor, but...

scabs can slow down the healing. think of road rash as a burn. keep it moist.

if possible wash off excess tissue/seepage/etc several times a day.

the wound will heal quicker, and there will be less scarring.

this is what i've done ever since being advised to so at an ER in San Francisco, after blowing a descent in the Headlands, and sliding on my back for far too long, +/-17 years ago.
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Old 07-30-09, 10:00 AM
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From my experience, scabbing also increases the severity of the scar left behind.
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Old 07-30-09, 10:02 AM
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I don't know what my buddy gets but his Mom is a nurse and she gives him some sort of cream. I've seen him get patches of road rash the size of his face and it seems to be healed in 2 weeks, it's intense.
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Old 07-30-09, 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by botto View Post
this is what i've done ever since being advised to so at an ER in San Francisco, after blowing a descent in the Headlands, and sliding on my back for far too long, +/-17 years ago.
I know that descent, I miss it (and the associated climb) now that I'm in colorado.


I don't think new skin is supposed to be for road rash. It's really nice for smaller cuts, especially slices and cracks, not so much abrasions. It's essentially super glue with clove oil but it's great for gluing skin back together. Not so great when you left all that skin on the road.
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Old 07-30-09, 10:25 AM
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btw, OP - http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php?t=567187
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Old 07-30-09, 10:29 AM
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yeah, never let it dry. when it starts to heal i use aloe. makes the skin stronger
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Old 07-30-09, 10:44 AM
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This not letting it dry thing is interesting, I haven't gotten any patches of road rash but got good scrapes on my elbows and knees. I let them dry quickly and like a kid picked the scap off both one or twice. I've noticed that both scars after several months are not only thin and sensitive but my elbow one is still peeling.
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Old 07-30-09, 10:53 AM
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Originally Posted by fauxto nick View Post
This not letting it dry thing is interesting, I haven't gotten any patches of road rash but got good scrapes on my elbows and knees. I let them dry quickly and like a kid picked the scap off both one or twice. I've noticed that both scars after several months are not only thin and sensitive but my elbow one is still peeling.
if it's a light/superficial scrape i let it dry. too much work involved.

if it's deeper (i.e. 2nd degree road rash), or at a stretch point (i.e. knees) i go through the motions.
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Old 07-30-09, 10:57 AM
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Originally Posted by botto View Post
if it's a light/superficial scrape i let it dry. too much work involved.

if it's deeper (i.e. 2nd degree road rash), or at a stretch point (i.e. knees) i go through the motions.
Good to know, I'd say both were at a stretch point more or less, the knee healed up quick I think because I touched it less but the elbow was constantly being bothered. They both healed and were small but the skin isn't too strong. Hopefully I won't have to figure out the road rash thing anytime soon.
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Old 07-30-09, 11:27 AM
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Originally Posted by dolfinack View Post
Can I be a total dummy and ask why letting the wound dry is a bad idea? Isn't this the natural way of healing? ie scabbing etc?
From my experience....It takes longer to heal. The skin grows back faster if you don't scab over. I had enough road rash to compare methods. The scab tends to crack and reopen. I'm sure there is a more "medical" based explanantion.
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