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What to do when a scrape oozes

On by , Digestive Care Advisor

What to do when a scrape oozes

Scrapes are caused by the skin rubbing against something abrasive. Most scrapes are minor and can be taken care of at home. They may be uncomfortable, but they usually heal quite fast, usually within a week. However, it is not uncommon to have clear fluid oozing coming out of a scrape. Does it mean the scrape is getting infected? What should you do when a scrape oozes?

What to do when a scrape oozes?

According to Jan Nissl, “It is common to have small amounts of fluid drain or ooze from a scrape. This oozing usually clears up gradually and stops within 4 days. Drainage is not a concern as long as there are no signs of infection.”

However if the scrape is either too deep, infected, if you can’t control the bleeding, if there are still remaining debris after cleaning or if the wound is located on sensitive skin, medical wound care is usually much needed. See: How to heal open wounds faster – First aid guidelines

Can oozing be a sign of infection?

Yes, it can be, especially if a scab has formed over an area that moves. Clear yellowish to pinkish fluid may ooze from the wound and an infection could develop under the scab.

“If a scrape is weeping clear fluid, it's okay, but if it contains blood or pus or there is redness that is traveling away from the wound, the scrape has become infected and needs to be treated with a course of oral antibiotics”, says Samuel Wentworth, M.D., a pediatrician in private practice in Danville, Indiana.

If you see any swelling, pus or a traveling area of redness, see a doctor because it is likely it is a sign of infection.

Most scrapes form a scab during the healing process, which is good. Once a scab is formed, the scraped area usually remains dry and does not ooze fluid anymore. In fact, a scab protects the scrape from additional injury and infection.

Should a scrape be covered with a bandage?

If a scrape oozes or still might get infected, it is advisable to cover the area with a loose-fitting bandage. Bandages keep the scrape clean, keep harmful bacteria out, and maintain moisture to prevent your skin from drying out.

However, a scrape heals best if it is left uncovered. Also, when the scrape stays moist, it often oozes fluid or small amounts of blood. After the wound has healed enough to make infection unlikely, it is better to exposure the scrape to the air to speed the healing process.

Are there any natural treatments for a minor scrape that oozes?

Colloidal silver is a natural antibiotic that can be used when the scrape is weeping. It helps kill bacteria without damaging newly forming skin cells and does not sting (which is nice for kids!). You can sprinkle colloidal silver over the affected area. It is not recommended to use essential oils at this stage, when the infection is still likely to happen.

It is also very important to wash the area before application and cover the scrape afterward with a nonstick bandage, which prevents the scab from binding the bandage to the wound.

Other articles related to scrapes

Everybody tends to get scrapes occasionally, especially children. Discover how to treat scrapes using natural remedies.

Looking for the fastest way to heal cuts naturally? All the answers to help get you on the path to better healing.

Interview with Aromatherapist Danny O'Rawe. Learn about essential oils and the way to use them to speed the healing process.

What are the wound care first aid guidelines? Which remedies to use? Discover tips to help heal open wounds faster.

Healing a cut can take from several days to a few years... Read some pieces of advice to speed the healing process.


If you think this article may be useful for others and want to link to it, please use the following format: Beck, Josephine. "What to do when a scrape oozes" Feb 17, 2010.

Important: The information provided on this page about scrapes is for educational and informational purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for the advice of an appropriately qualified practitioner.

What to do when a scrape oozes? Feel free to share your own experience by leaving a comment!

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Comments from the community (10)

"Vikki" on 2014-10-23 at 12:32:23
the clear fluid is something very normal, i have a scrape doing it now. Basically between cells there is a fluid which contains all the nice stuff that helps healing, and these leak out through the scrape to form the scab. keep them covered for the first day or so then leave them to the air is my advice
"summer" on 2013-08-20 at 21:06:34
sometimes keeping it covered could make it worse. That happened to a scrape on my knuckle. I think the hot weather and my sweating made the bandaid way too moist and allowed infection to occur. So if you do cover, you must change the bandaid regularly.
"jamz" on 2013-02-09 at 04:28:23
i have a fresh scrape on my knee that has taken a long time to scab and I made the mistake of covering it with a bandaid and I think it suffocated the wound because it was starting to scab but then when I checked on the band aid later it was all moist and the skin fluid stuff soaked the bandaid. so I removed it and kept trying to find solutions to the skin fluid drying faster to form a scab because I'm at a party and feel embarrassed I have to wear my boyfriend's shorts instead of regular pants. anyways, i started to talk about a faster way of it scabbing and I checked on it a bit later and I look down, it already seems better! I think talking to it really helps! like that talking to plants thing, it really does seemed more loved and healed much faster. <3 <3 <3 much love to everyone's wounds~~~ heal faster everyone* also p.s.- I looked up google images/wiki on that colloidal silver it even wiki says that there is little evidence that it speeds healing... or at least insufficient evidence. be careful what you put into your body!! the side effects of it is a blueish tint to the skin (i dare you to google image colloidal silver.) it's base is a metal, and once it enters your body it doesn't leave!!! holy crap!!
"1stMate" on 2012-10-30 at 17:37:48
Don't remove any dried scabs from the clear fluid leaking out of wound. It's blood plasma , white blood cells I think. Wounds need to be dry to help the scabbing process to promote healing, which may be why neosporin keeps wound from drying out . I hate the stuff. If it is somewhere that gets contact or rubbed then keep it covered obviously. If there is pus showing and skin surrounding wound is red or swollen see a doctor asap. Just common sense is all.
"1stMate" on 2012-10-30 at 17:23:46
When I get scraped I noticed that Neosporin is the WORST thing to apply to my slow healing oozing cuts. That crap makes the cut become itchy and burns, feeling like poison ivy rash. I keep mine clean and dry , with a loose dressing . This is my experience only and not meant to be a cure for everyone, just what has worked for me.
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