Some injuries and conditions will need medical assistance because they happen suddenly, become worse or will not go away. However, they differ from an accident or trauma that requires immediate medical attention from an ambulance or a trip to the hospital.
Urgent medical attention of doctors or a nurse may be required when diagnosis, stitches or further investigation with the use of medical equipment such as an x-ray is needed.
Conditions that may require emergency medicine are:
- Sprains and broken bones
- Cuts needing stitches
- Accidents and falls
- Burns and scalds from hot liquid or steam
- Severe abdominal pain
- Vomiting, diarrhea or dehydration
- Back problems
- Mild to moderate asthma
- Animal bites
For other conditions that involve respiratory symptoms, such as breathing difficulties, severe sore throat, cough or high fever, patients should NOT attend the practice. Instead, a TeleHealth consultation can be organised with our reception to determine the best course of action.
If any of these illnesses or conditions are life-threatening, then Emergency services should be called on Triple Zero (000).
A fracture is a break or a crack in a bone and can occur in a variety of forms. Its severity depends on the forces and bone involved, as well as the age and health of the person.
Sometimes it can be hard to know whether an injury is a sprain, dislocation or a fracture, so further investigation by a medical professional is wise. Injuries may also affect the surrounding organs, tissues and structures and in children can disrupt the growth of bone, so it is best to have them seen to straight away.
A doctor can utilise x-ray to diagnose bone fractures, as well as other methods such as CT scans and MRI where necessary. Although broken bones can heal by themselves, a medical investigation can help ensure the bones are aligned correctly and that they regain full strength, movement and sensitivity. With more complicated fractures surgery and traction may be applicable in which case your doctor can oversee the management of treatment and assist with recovery.
Minor Procedures & Surgery
Medical procedures may require relatively urgent attention, while others can have appointments booked ahead of time. These can include:
- Removal of warts
- Stitches for minor cuts and lacerations
- Syringing of ear wax
- Skin biopsy
- Ingrown toe-nails
- Contraception implants
- Skin cancer excisions
Our medical staff work within a dedicated treatment room using sterile equipment and modern facilities. Minor surgical procedures may utilise a local anaesthetic.
The details of minor procedures or surgery will be explained first by the doctor or nurse. This discussion may also include what to expect afterwards, any self-care required at home and follow-up appointments that may be needed.
Wound Care Dressings
Most of us know how to deal with relatively simple wounds like a cut or grazed knee, to clean the area with an antiseptic and cover with sticking plaster.
It’s when a wound is not improving that it may be best to consult your doctor.
Most wounds should improve in the first few weeks after an injury in that they become smaller and aren’t hurting as much. When this is not the case, and seeping, redness or inflammation continues, it is wise to seek medical assistance, especially for the young, old and immunocompromised.
When you do need to see a doctor at Affinity Family Medical, the time it takes for a doctor or nurse to see you will depend on the seriousness of the medical condition and the urgent needs of other patients at the practice.
Depending on the results of the assessment, you may be sent to emergency care for severe injury or illness, referred to a specialist for further investigation, or your doctor may require a follow-up examination.
Either way, our friendly reception staff will assist the doctors and nursing staff, to ensure that you and that anyone referred to, will have the documentation required for treatment of your condition.