What Happens If You Get Cut By Metal?

Germs and bacteria are everywhere and it easy to get an infection when you’re exposed to the germs or bacteria. Not all cuts will lead to an infection, especially minor ones. But, you can’t help thinking at the back of your mind whether you will get tetanus because you were cut by a metallic object. Any type of skin wound that is as a result of being scraped by a rusty metal puts you at risk of certain infections. When it comes to tetanus bacterium, Clostridium tetani, it does not cause if it is exposed to air, so shallow wounds hardly host the bacterium. However, if the wound is deep where the bacteria can easily spread to the bloodstream, then the bacteria may strive, multiply and release harmful toxins.

What Happens If You Get Cut By Metal?

What Happens If You Get Cut By Metal?

Possible injuries from being cut by metal: The common skin injuries when you have been cut by any object, whether it is metal or otherwise, are cuts, scratches, and abrasions. Cuts are as a result of sharp objects like a knife, scratches are small injuries caused by sharp objects grazing your skin, and abrasions are caused by rubbing roughly against the skin. After an injury, your skin bleeds and the wound starts healing as platelets are released to enhance the healing process. Shallow wounds heal faster compared to deep wounds.

What You Need To Do If You Are Cut By A Metal?

When you are cut by a metal, the first thing you feel is a pain then the new wound starts bleeding. First things first, you should try to stop the bleeding by applying pressure on the area using a clean soft cloth. The bleeding will cease after a while if the injury is not severe and thereafter you should clean it up and dress it up. If your wound is deep the bleeding continues even after applying pressure, you should visit a doctor to tend to the wound. If the cut is deep and the edges of skin are far apart, you may need stitches to initiate the healing of the cut. Once the wound heals, then you can go back to the doctor to have the stitches removed. First aid is important after being cut because it helps reduce the risk of further exposure to germs and bacteria which cause infections.

When To Seek Medical Advice?

Many wounds heal properly without causing any complications. However, some wounds tend to cause problems for the patient especially when they cause too much pain, have pus or start to swell. If you had not visited the doctor and your wound starts causing problems, you should do so immediately for an examination and treatment.

Adding to that, if the object that caused the bruising is a rusty metal such as a nail, you should be tested for tetanus. Tetanus causing bacteria is commonly found in soil and dust but can be found almost anywhere. So, you may have been exposed to the bacterium, which would then enter your body through the injured surface on your skin. If you experience any symptoms of muscle stiffness or difficulties eating or breathing, make sure you make an appointment with a doctor.

Is Tetanus Shot Necessary?

A tetanus shot might not be necessary if you have been cut by a metal and your tetanus vaccination is up-to-date. Otherwise, if you’ve never been immunized against the disease or it has been a while since you got a booster shot, then the shot might be of the essence. If your wound is deep and indeed get tetanus, but you assume the wound, then you’re likely to experience blood poisoning. Why? Tetanus bacterium releases toxins which are harmful to your body and travel to other parts of your body through blood. From the site of injury, your wound may appear blue-black due to the severity of the infection. To be on the safe side, ensure that you have deep wounds examined by a professional. For shallow wounds, you can practice good wound care to prevent any infections.


The first thing that people think of when they are cut by a metal is tetanus. For a normal cut or wound, the first thing you will note is blood which as a result of the injury on your skin. If your cut is not serious and is not infected, then it will heal nicely and you will barely experience any complications. However, if the wound is deep, there is risk of infection which can lead to serious health complications if not attended to. In case of a tetanus infection, you are likely to exhibit symptoms such as stiffened muscles, fever, and painful spasms. So, whenever you are cut by metal, seek medical advice to rule out any infections and get proper treatment.

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Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:October 31, 2018

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