COVID-19 updates, including vaccine information, for our patients and visitors Learn More

Menu
Search

Preventing Holiday Hand Injuries

 

September 30, 2005  |  

It happens every year at the holidays: The UCSD Medical Center Emergency Room pages the surgeon on call for the UCSD Hand Surgery Service to examine a hand injured by an errant knife while carving a turkey, cutting open pumpkins or other hard squash, or chopping all the food ingredients that goes into holiday meals.

But, says Reid Abrams, M.D., Chief of the Hand Surgery Service, a little caution and a few common sense rules can prevent a painful injury, surgery, and lengthy treatment.

Abrams offers up the following tips for a safe and pain-free holiday season:

  • Always cut away from yourself. And, when cutting into a pumpkin or turkey, don’t place your free hand opposite the side where the blade is entering. If you push too hard you will impale your hand.
  • Carve and chop in a well-lit, dry area so you can see what you’re doing and the item you’re carving won’t slip.
  • Make sure the handles of your chopping and carving instruments are dry when using them, so your cutting hand doesn’t slip down the handle and onto the blade accidentally slicing your hand.
  • Consider using an electric knife for ease of carving turkey or a ham.
  • A good pair of kitchen sheers eases the job of cutting bones and joints.
  • Keep your meat carving and chopping knives very sharp. Nothing causes accidents faster than a knife too dull to cut but sharp enough to slice into your hand. Be careful not to force the knife. If your knife is sharp you won’t have to force it.
  • Children should not be allowed to carve meat or pumpkins. They don’t yet have the dexterity or coordination to work with sharp instruments.
  • Finally, if you do get hurt while carving, if it’s a deep wound or if you can’t control the bleeding, get to an emergency room as soon as possible.

    # # #

    News Media Contact
    Jeffree Itrich
    619-543-6163

    UCSD Health Sciences Communications HealthBeat: /news/

     


 


Media Contact

Share This Article


Related News

7/28/2021
Obesity is a major public health issue among Latinos, and a risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease. But in a new study, researchers at UC San Diego report that cardiometabolic abnormalities, such as hype ...
7/28/2021
Cardiovascular physicians with UC San Diego Health have joined an international clinical trial utilizing a new Extravascular Implantable Cardioverter-Defibrillator (EV ICD) system to help treat sudden ...
7/26/2021
UC San Diego Health, the region’s only academic health system, is ranked #1 in San Diego and #5 in California, placing it among the nation’s best hospitals, according to the 2021-2022 U.S. News & Worl ...
7/23/2021
Senate President Pro Tempore Toni Atkins visited UC San Diego Medical Center today to recognize a $30 million allocation in the 2021-2022 California state budget that will support the redevelopment of ...



Follow Us