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A Successful GN Conference

Success! The first annual Guardian Nation Conference was a big win. For me personally, it was the chance to shake off the rust and do some teaching.

This conference was the first time I’ve taught tactical medicine in a few years and getting back into the saddle was surprisingly easy. Since is this conference being the expansion of defensive shooting skills, I put together a class of some of the essential things that should be considered by a citizen carrying a concealed weapon.

Tactical medicine was how I earned my dinner for several years and it’s my favorite extension of medicine. So, I was excited to give my perspective on civilian CCW Tactical Medicine.

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Emergency Trauma: Where Do You Even Start?

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.

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Medical Trauma: What is Shock?

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.

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Teaching Emergency Trauma at the Active Self Protection Conference!

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.

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The Incredible Story of the World’s 1st Illegal Underwater Surgery

Doc Lipes Performs an appendectomy on a Submarine by Artist John Falter

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.

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Battle Dressing Showdown: Israeli Style Vs. OLAES

Seems like I’ve been on a bit of a pressure bandage kick. Which is fine with me cause I can only write about tourniquets for so long before my eyes start to bleed.

If you didn’t already know, a pressure bandage is a stretchy material wrapped around the victim to provide constant firm pressure to the wound and wound packing gauze for bleeding control.

This is important to know because not all life-threatening injuries occur on the arms and legs where TQs do their best and only work.

There are plenty of different pressure dressings on the market and they vary widely in size, function, and style, but the two that are leading the pack are the Israeli style and the OLAES Modular Pressure Dressing.

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If You Don’t Already Know, Here’s the Theory on Pressure Dressings:

If you have a good understanding on how to use your gear, it frees you up to think outside the box and come up with solutions to problems you might face in an emergency.

Everyone wants to be that person who saves the day, calm, cool, and collected while the world goes to hell around them. It’s an admirable trait and one anyone can cultivate with a little practice.

Part of that journey includes having a good understanding of your gear. If you know how to use what you’ve got, your effectiveness and efficiency (both essential for saving lives) skyrocket.

Here’s a brief run-down of what a pressure dressing is and why you need one (or a dozen) in your trauma kit:

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An Extremely Biased Review: The Mountain Man Medical “Mass Casualty Trauma Kit”

Full disclosure: I’m the one that decides what gear should go in our kits. And if it isn’t obvious already, I receive a financial kick back for talking about the MMM kits.

But I’m also confident this is an excellent trauma kit full of top-of-the-line gear and priced better than any comparable kit on the market. I take a lot of pride in the value we offer, and it’s my hope that more trauma gear is placed where it can save more lives.

One of my favorite jobs during my career in the medical field has been teaching trauma classes to organizations looking to be proactive in preparing for a disaster, either natural or manmade.

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Daydreams Helped Me in Combat. The Science:

You might’ve gotten into trouble for it in school, but daydreaming can be great for your survival.

I learned this the hard way as a method of keeping myself present in the rocky hills of Afghanistan. While on patrol with my fireteam, it was easy for my mind to wander back to what must be happening in the normal world instead of focused on the dangers around me.

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How to Pack a Wound in 6 Easy Steps

Last week we discussed why learning to pack a wound is an essential skill for stopping life threatening bleeds. If you haven’t seen it yet, I recommend giving the article a read so you’ll better understand what we’re talking about in this one.

Tourniquets Can’t Fix Everything. Why You MUST Learn Wound Packing

Tourniquets save so many lives due in part to how simple they are to apply. Wound packing is equally simple and arguably just as important as TQs.

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