Even if you fish carefully, you may get a fishhook in your skin. A fishhook is a curved, sharp instrument placed on a lure or line to catch fish. Some fishhooks have a barb near the tip that keeps the fish on the hook. You can also use a barbless fishhook, which may reduce the chance of a fishhook injury.
Fishhook injuries often occur when you remove a slippery, flopping fish from your line. Injury may also occur when you are casting a line, from another person casting a line, or if you walk barefoot near fishing gear. The chance of a fishhook injury increases if you are not familiar with fishing gear.
Most fishhook injuries puncture the skin of the face, scalp, fingers, back, or ears. Home treatment can help you remove a fishhook that is not too deep. It is important to clean the puncture wound well to help prevent infection.
A fishhook can cause other problems if it enters the eye, muscles, tendons, ligaments, or bones. A fishhook injury is more serious when:
Check your symptoms to decide if and when you should see a doctor.
First aid for fishhook injuries includes the following:
|Try a nonprescription medicine to help treat your fever or pain:|
Talk to your child’s doctor before switching back and forth between doses of acetaminophen and ibuprofen. When you switch between two medicines, there is a chance your child will get too much medicine.
|Be sure to follow these safety tips when you use a nonprescription medicine:|
Call your doctor if any of the following occur during home treatment:
The following tips will help you reduce your chance of a fishhook injury:
When you go fishing, be prepared for a fishhook injury. If you are prepared, you may be able to remove a fishhook, which may prevent a serious injury and decrease your risk of infection.
To prepare for your appointment, see the topic Making the Most of Your Appointment.
You can help your doctor diagnose and treat your condition by being prepared to answer the following questions:
|Primary Medical Reviewer||William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine|
|Specialist Medical Reviewer||H. Michael O'Connor, MD - Emergency Medicine|
|Last Revised||April 26, 2011|
Last Revised: April 26, 2011
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