HEALTHBEAT 4: A local hand surgeon shares tips on protecting you - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

HEALTHBEAT 4: A local hand surgeon shares tips on protecting your family this 4th of July


Lighting off fireworks is a common 4th of July tradition. A local hand surgeon shares tips so you can remain safe while still having fun.

But, firework injuries can come with it. Experts said they average around eight to 10,000 a year.  

Dr. Michael Doarn is an Orthopedic, Hand, and Upper extremity surgeon at Tri-State Specialists. He said the 4th of July is when they tend to see the most injuries, with the majority being teenagers.

"And even younger than that. 0-9," said Dr. Michael Doarn, Tri-State Specialists. "That's the second highest proportion of patients that we see. So most common in children and young adults." 

Doarn said there aren't many options to restore and maintain a lot of normal function. 

"The ones that are blast injuries really are devastating injuries to the hand," said Doarn. "Where the fingers, parts of the hand, even the wrist or arm can be missing and you can't really repair those."

Doarn said if an extremity such as a finger is removed, you should put it in a bag of saline or water and put it on ice. 

"However, often times with firework injuries, there's not much that you can really replant," said Doarn. "We do what's called revision amputations."

"To do the amputation basically you're removing that abnormal tissue that you can't repair."

Doarn said often times the injury can be so traumatic that you don't know what to do. 

He says the first step is to remain calm. Next, you should next call 911 or go to the emergency room.

"Emergency room physicians are very adept and experienced at taking care of these types of injuries."

Doarn said if you are lighting off fireworks this 4th of July season, leave it to the adults or better yet, catch a show by professionals. 

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