Peter Thornton in hospital following his skin tear injury on holiday.

It was another beautiful day at the Turkish holiday resort of Bitez, where myself and my family were spending our holiday. My wife and children had decided to go out to a local market, whereas I made the choice not to go with them and instead spend a lazy day on the beach near to where we were staying.

In the morning, I set off on a short stroll. After walking a few miles west along the beach, I found a beautiful resort called Akhtar. I decided to stay there for a couple of hours, intending to bask in the sun and cool off with a refreshing drink. After getting myself comfortable on a sun lounger, I took off my protective sleeves. I saw no danger in my surroundings and wanted to let my arms see the sun for once.

I was in desperate need of an ice cream so took a short walk to a little shop nearby and bought one.  The loungers were arranged on a wooden decking, sometimes with a step down or step up to a different level.  I returned carrying the ice cream and did not notice that there was a step down in the decking to the lounger where I had been sitting.

I fell violently onto the edge of the lounger with the right hand side of my body, the elbow of my right arm hitting the arm rest of the lounger with great force. I found myself lying on the decking on my side with blood pouring from my elbow.

I was immediately surrounded by very anxious people who had seen or heard my accident.  They all showed great concern and one person spoke English well which was very helpful.  I dared to look at my elbow and saw that I had a skin tear from the elbow to halfway along my forearm. Skin was also flapping back away from the cut.

The helpful people got me to my feet and walked me to a small drinks stand, where they gave me some water and called an ambulance.  A doctor and two nurses quickly arrived – by this time, I was getting foolishly grumpy envisaging having to spend an entire day in hospital.  I told them I did not need to go to hospital and that they could just stick the wound together with steristrip.  They insisted that I had to go to hospital and I eventually gave in.

They made me lie down on a stretcher in the ambulance and proceeded to drive me rather slowly along a series of very winding roads. I emerged three hours later from the hospital helped by my wife and our very kind hotel landlady Dilek. I had 12 stitches in my arm and felt pretty stupid. Fortunately, we were fully insured – as Turkey is not in the EU, the incident would have cost us £750 had we not been covered.  I had to return to the hospital a couple of days later for another dressing and then to our local surgery for re-dressing every two days for the following two weeks.

Thankfully, I did have my thin skin protection socks on during the incident – I dread to think what would have happened to my legs if I hadn’t been wearing them.

If you have thinning skin, isn’t it more sensible to wear protective socks and sleeves all the time?  The most likely time for you to experience a fall or accident is when you are placed in an environment you are not used to; this is when wearing the socks and sleeves is particularly important.