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 Reference remove a fishhook that is not too deep. It is important to Reference 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:
- A fishhook is in or near an eye. Be sure to know Reference first aid for a fishhook in or near the eye.
- A barb can't be removed using home treatment.
- Reference Bleeding Opens New Window Reference Opens New Window is Reference severe Opens New Window or can't be stopped.
- The wound is big enough to Reference need stitches.
- Blood vessels, nerves,
Reference tendons Opens New Window,
Reference ligaments Opens New Window,
joints, or bones are injured. Injuries to these areas
- Numbness or tingling.
- Pale, white, blue, or cold skin.
- Decreased ability to Reference move the area.
- Signs of infection develop, such as redness, swelling, or pus. A puncture from a fishhook is often dirty from marine bacteria, which increases the chance of a Reference skin infection.
- Your Reference tetanus immunization is not current.
Reference Check your symptoms to decide if and when you should see a doctor.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference April 26, 2011|
|Medical Review:||Reference William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
Reference H. Michael O'Connor, MD - Emergency Medicine