1. frejjja

    frejjja New Member

    Joined:
    May 30, 2018
    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    nsw australia

    How long would it take to heal from a stab wound?

    Discussion in 'Research' started by frejjja, May 30, 2018.

    So a character in the thing I'm writing gets stabbed entirely through her abdomen, as to how she survives I'm just pulling some handwavy nonsense and assuming it missed something that would bleed heavily (liver) and the blade isn't going to be pulled out until she gets medical attention but I was wondering what the healing timeline is for this kind of wound. Most of the information I can find about stab wound recovery is for smaller stabs, this would be entirely through her abdomen and even if it was through the 'safest' place it still would badly damage some internal organs. and would also be quite a large wound.
     
  2. GingerCoffee

    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2013
    Messages:
    18,385
    Likes Received:
    7,080
    Location:
    Ralph's side of the island.
    If nothing (including intestines) were damaged, it's not about depth as much as it's about the entry and exit wounds as long as the person got antibiotics.

    Any major organ, blood vessel or intestine would require a surgical repair to survive. Everything in the abdomen is fairly compacted in there. There is no place to go through and through unless its more on the side and misses the abdominal cavity. Look at some anatomy pictures.

    And when you say "heal" what do you mean? Back to functioning or wound gone and just a scar left? You'd be back to functioning in a day unless the muscles were seriously damaged.
     
    Cave Troll and zoupskim like this.
  3. irite

    irite Member

    Joined:
    May 28, 2018
    Messages:
    163
    Likes Received:
    174
    Location:
    Wikipedia's Avery
    "How could it be any worse?"
    "You could be stabbed"

    Life Of Brian

    Being stabbed isn't as bad as you think, but thinking in terms of an 'average' reader it is very bad so I see your point.

    The liver heals itself and can regrow, if a slice is lost it's not too significant. (See medical research on alcoholism) If stabbed through the liver blood will be deep purple/brown in colour, knife still in not likely to bleed to death before an ambulance arrives. It's only heart, lungs and spine that are major. You can live without your spleen, a large chunk of intestine can go, people function on one kidney. For every kidney donated you end up with 2 people living with one. The patient having that sort of stuff explained to reassure them while they are being saved then closes the holes in the plot of how/why they survived.

    Look into invasive surgery, people get cut open every day and come out fine, there'll be healing times/patient information for different operations and being stabbed is an impromptue street operation that gets finished off professionally. Have a look at Colitis treatment because that involves operations/removal of the area of the body your focusing on. I know (a sort of) colostomy bag can be internally fitted and the person then drinks enzym drinks (think yakult) to create a 'natural' environment for digestion. The only problem you might have is the time when the story is set, if it's a long time ago then modern medicine might not be the explanation.

    Also see Caeserean Section they happen every day. One of the problems in healing is muscle damage. Every way you move it hurts, a cough, sneeze, even breathing. You roll over in your sleep and wake your self up with the pain. It's mentally harmful as much as physically because of the way it changes your life. When it happens your a victim, after that your a survivor... You move on with a leg missing, not from losing a leg...
     
    Last edited: May 30, 2018
  4. GingerCoffee

    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2013
    Messages:
    18,385
    Likes Received:
    7,080
    Location:
    Ralph's side of the island.
    All of these things you are describing require surgical repair. You will indeed bleed to death from either a lacerated liver or ruptured spleen without a surgical repair. Both are blood filled organs.

    There is also a pancreas and very large major blood vessels in the abdomen. And once intestines are punctured massive infection sets in unless that is repaired and you get antibiotics. Then there is loss of blood supply to the intestines such as severing the mesenteric artery which can be fatal as the section of the intestine dies and necroses.

    All of those things change recovery and healing times.
     
    Iain Aschendale likes this.
  5. irite

    irite Member

    Joined:
    May 28, 2018
    Messages:
    163
    Likes Received:
    174
    Location:
    Wikipedia's Avery
    Indeed, original post explained that medical attention/surgical repair would be administered and that is how they are saved. They didn't offer a time span between stabbing and medical attention. Were they stabbed early on in a hostage situation? So yeah infection and factual bleed rates would also need to be in their consideration of how they write the piece but it came across like they need the character to survive and were going to avoid post-op infections like MRSA. It would be more of medical journal than story if we get any more involved.

    Thanks to battlefield medicine it is amazing what the human body can survive these days. War's good for some things but it does nothing but harm those involved
     
    Last edited: May 30, 2018
  6. GingerCoffee

    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2013
    Messages:
    18,385
    Likes Received:
    7,080
    Location:
    Ralph's side of the island.
  7. newjerseyrunner

    newjerseyrunner Contributor Contributor Contest Winner 2022

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2016
    Messages:
    1,461
    Likes Received:
    1,432
    I would imagine a stab would would heal at about the same rate as a surgical cut. My wife had back surgery and they went in through her stomach. Took about a month to fully heal but she could move around easily within a few days (with painkillers obviously.)
     
  8. frigocc

    frigocc Contributor Contributor

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2019
    Messages:
    975
    Likes Received:
    589
    Now what about being stabbed in the chest, missing the heart? I know a sucking chest wound would make any sort of positive pressure ventilation impossible for the EMTs. How is it treated by medics and doctors, though? Would this cause hypoperfusion? Potentially hypovolemic shock? Would the Medic use an occlusive (?) dressing?

    MC gets stabbed in my book, want it to be authentic.
     
  9. The Dapper Hooligan

    The Dapper Hooligan (V) ( ;,,;) (v) Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2017
    Messages:
    5,864
    Likes Received:
    10,738
    Location:
    The great white north.
    Was stabbed in the leg, not the abdomen, and it either bled or seeped blood constantly for the first week. It took about 2 weeks before I could move without problems, though I'd still have to change the dressing at least daily, and I was varying levels of gimpy for about 3 months. At about 6 months it was "healed" healed, but even now, more than a decade later, it still hurts if I overextend or it's too cold and damp out.
     
  10. GingerCoffee

    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2013
    Messages:
    18,385
    Likes Received:
    7,080
    Location:
    Ralph's side of the island.
    Just a quibble, a surgeon would go through the abdomen but try very hard not to puncture the stomach or the intestines.
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice