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:
Continue reading 4 Ways to Carry and Stage Your Tourniquet
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.
Continue reading Battle Dressing Showdown: Israeli Style Vs. OLAES
Taking care of someone who is unconscious can be daunting, especially if you don’t know what you are doing. Trauma to the head, or even a massive loss of blood can cause your casualty to lose consciousness.
When unconscious, the casualty loses their ability to protect their airway and their tongue may fall to the back of their throat and close (occlude) the airway.
If not managed properly, this can cause your casualty to expire, or at the very least, cause complications. Since this isn’t our goal, we need to have a plan for helping the casualty keep their airway clear.
Continue reading What is a Nasal Pharyngeal Airway?
Tourniquets enjoy too much of the spotlight. With all the glorious combat saves a good TQ has, the hardworking pressure dressing gets forgotten in civilian emergency preparedness.
Yes, of course TQs are important, but they only count for approximately ¼ of your body. There are other places where a wound would be life-threatening, but untreatable with most tourniquets.
That’s where a good pressure dressing and wound packing comes in. It handles the bleeding that TQs miss.
Continue reading 4 Styles of Pressure Dressings Explained
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:
Continue reading If You Don’t Already Know, Here’s the Theory on Pressure Dressings:
I’ve never thought more about tourniquets then I have in this job. Bleeding control being such an important topic of discussion means devoting a good amount of time to all the various ways people have developed to save lives.
It takes some time to run through all the various options out there, and this week we’re looking at the Gen 4 Recon Medical Tourniquet.
But first, before we get into all the little details, we have to address something important.
Continue reading New and Improved CAT Clone? The Recon Medical TQ Review
It would be nice for emergencies to happen in the very best locations. A well-lit ER is a great place to have an emergency if you happen to be in one at the time. But Emergencies don’t happen like that. Usually it’s cold, wet, and dark, and with no help available.
Emergencies are especially scary because, you’re “it.” The casualty might be relying on you because no one else is willing or able. And if it’s dark and you don’t have help, it’s nice to be able to use your hands AND see what you’re doing.
Continue reading The Best Type of Flashlight for Emergency
Working as a Corpsman and EMT, I wasn’t given the choice of what medical gear I used. People with much more experience, training and education decided ahead of time what was acceptable and what wasn’t.
As a result, I only used gear that was issued and available to me and I never thought about if there might be a better option because it wouldn’t matter if there was. It would go against SOPs (Standard Operating Procedures) and that was always strictly forbidden.
Now that I’m free to explore and look into other life saving equipment, I’m given the opportunity to search out the answers for myself and question my reasons for doing what I do.
Continue reading Trauma Gear: The 1 Item That’s Worth 5
An emergency usually means you have little or no resources available to recover from a bad situation. Being able to extend the life of precious resources like trauma gear might become an essential skill set, and it happens to be one that medics pride themselves in.
Unless you're heading out to do errands in a fully stocked ambulance, you aren’t going to be able to carry all the things you might need for trauma control. And the situation only gets worse for multiple casualties.
Some things you just can’t get around, like carrying tourniquets for life threatening bleeds or seals for chest wall punctures. But if possible, carrying items that can be used for more then one type of injury is good for extending the number, and different kinds of emergency trauma you might encounter.
Here’s a list of items that can handle more than one job:
Continue reading Extending Your Resources: TOP 5 Multi-Use Trauma Gear
A few years ago, I had the opportunity to work as a security consultant for organizations looking to be proactive for active shooter incident (ASI) or mass casualty events. It was a great experience that I thoroughly enjoyed since I was able to use hard learned skills I acquired from the military.
One of my focuses when working with a new client, was asking them to show me what medical gear they had on hand to treat any injuries. Usually what I found was pretty dismal.
After a lot of rummaging around, they would drag out an old sun faded EMT bag with most of the important things missing, or bring out a small plastic kit half full of Band-Aids and Motrin packets.
Continue reading The Essentials: How to Build a Mass Casualty Trauma Kit