One of the hardest things about trauma medicine is knowing where to begin. If you aren’t somebody who uses these skills on the regular, like an EMT or Paramedic, then you’re likely to be a little off your game. But that’s expected.
Emergencies are tense and scary and that can cause an unexperienced first responder to hesitate. But there are a few tricks that can help you make the right call when it matters most.
Shock is a term that can be very broad in its description but can also be broken down into more precise definitions. Many people mistake the term “shock” to mean that dazed and confused state some victims go into after experiencing something emotionally traumatizing.
Emotional shock is still a concern for a medic but is not usually considered life-threatening in an emergency. For our study today, we’ll focus on medical forms of shock and hopefully approach it in a way that’s easy to understand.
One of the things I say with regularity is how important it is to learn wound packing. But if you haven’t heard, here’s why:
Wound packing is an essential skill because a tourniquet (TQ) cannot be used to treat all life-threatening bleeding. Don’t get me wrong, TQs work great for arms and legs, but if you’re bleeding from anywhere else, such as your neck or groin, wound packing is the only thing that will save your life.
I’ve gotten some questions recently asking what I think is better, QuikClot, or Combat Gauze. There are a few differences that might help you understand what it is you’re carrying in your trauma kit.
Ok, I get it. Firearm training is a lot sexier than medical training. But to be a good defender, prepared for emergencies both natural and man-made, means having an acceptable collection of skills and knowledge.
I’m a firm believer in the idea that if you’re going to carry the tools to make holes, (defensive weapons) you need the tools to patch holes (trauma gear). This conference is your chance to get trained in both, from excellent, world class instructors with real life experience.
After a year of lost training due to Covid shutdowns, it’s time to get back to picking up new skills or brushing up on old ones.
The month of September is full of live training! Learning about trauma techniques from the internet is better than nothing, but it doesn’t beat in-person training – Ask questions and practice procedures, so you can confidently save a life when it matters most.
Shortly after high school, I took my wife’s family out for a short summer camping trip to one of Colorado’s national forests.
It was just me, an overconfident 19-year-old, my future wife and her younger siblings spending a few nights under the stars. I showed them what I knew about building fires and throwing knives, but after a while we got bored and decided to head out for a hike.
While we strolled along in the back, her siblings ran on ahead and I lost sight of them for a short time.
I don’t know how other branches instill passion in their medics, but in the US Navy it’s done by telling the legends of our craft. The heroes who’ve gone before us to set the example and show us what being a combat medic means.
One of these who inspired me early in my career was the story of Pharmacist’s Mate 1st Class Wheeler Lipes, who, while at sea and underwater in enemy territory, preformed an illegal surgery that saved the life of his shipmate.
The quick and timely application of a tourniquet has saved many lives and all good medics ensure their gear is ready to go. Cutting down on steps and thinking ahead helps a bad situation go a little more smoothly. And every little bit counts.
Maybe you learned this lesson the hard way, or maybe you prefer to just listen to those of us who did.
Either way, setting up your TQ is a great idea and here are some things that will make your life easier: