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Urgent Care

Contusion Treatment in Dartmouth, Fairhaven, Fall River, Lakeville, Seekonk & Wareham, MA as well as Middletown, RI

A contusion is a bruise and a very common soft tissue injury. Most contusions are minor and heal quickly. When contusions are severe, they can cause deep tissue damage. Recovery from a severe contusion can take several weeks.

If you have a contusion or bruise that needs immediate medical care, you can rely on the exceptional medical services at Southcoast Health Urgent Care Center in Dartmouth, Fairhaven, Fall River, Lakeville, Seekonk, Wareham, MA and Middletown, RI. Find a doctor nearby today!

Risk Factors for Bruising

A contusion results from blunt force, such as a fall or direct blow. The force crushes small blood vessels, and sometimes the muscle fibers and connective tissue, without breaking the skin. Your body normally stops the bleeding quickly. But, a small amount of blood leaks into surrounding tissues and under the skin, forming a visible bruise.

The following risk factors increase the likelihood of bruising easily:

  • Age greater than 50
  • Anticoagulant and antiplatelet medications, such as aspirin and warfarin (Coumadin)
  • Bleeding disorders due to liver disease, vitamin K deficiency or an inherited condition
  • Blood vessel defects
  • Platelet disorders

Contusion Symptoms

Symptoms of a contusion may include pain, swelling and skin color changes. These color changes are the result of blood trapped under the skin. Contusions generally go through phases as your body breaks down the blood and gets rid of it.

You may notice the following:

  • Bruises often start as red or purplish marks that may be swollen and tender.
  • After a couple of days, the bruise may turn blue or blackish.
  • Within five to 10 days, the bruise appears green or yellow.
  • After about two weeks, the bruise fades to brown and will continue to fade until it completely resolves.

How We Treat Contusions at Southcoast Health Urgent Care Center

Most contusions will fade on their own. In fact, you may not even realize you have one until well after a minor bump or blow. If you notice the bruise or injury right away, you can help speed healing by using RICE:

  • Rest
  • Ice using cold packs for 10 minutes at a time
  • Compression with an ace wrap
  • Elevation above the level of the heart

Over-the-counter pain relievers may also improve your comfort.

Come to your closest Southcoast Health Urgent Care Center location or contact your doctor if you notice any of the following with your bruise:

  • A lump forms over the bruise
  • Abnormal bleeding, such as nosebleeds, bleeding gums or blood in the urine or stool
  • Frequent or very large or painful contusions
  • Pain persists for more than three days
  • Severe pain or swelling in the area

Southcoast Health offers expert care for contusions in patients of all ages across southeastern Massachusetts and parts of Rhode Island.