Life Saving Medical Products
Have you ever been deep in the back country and suffered a life threatening injury?
Hopefully your answer is no! Unfortunately not every outdoors man’s answer is no, and this article is going to address training you can go through and products you can purchase to increase the likelihood of surviving a life threatening injury when you are out hunting.
First lets talk about what kind of injuries I’m even talking about. Most of the time when I am in the woods I have something with me that could cause Penetrating Trauma, which is basically an object that pierces the skin and creates an open wound in body tissue.
I usually have a firearm, bow, and knife with me that opens up the possibility of getting hit with a bullet or ricochet, an arrow with a super sharp broadhead, or stabbed or sliced with my knife. I am also usually around other people that have the same types of tools for hunting, and that increases the chances that one of us could end up with an extra hole or two.
Penetrating wounds are either compressible, or non-compressible. Obviously compressible injuries are the easiest to fix, and every good First Aid class teaches us to use “Pressure” over a wound site to stop bleeding (Hemorrhaging).
Extremity injuries (Arms or Legs) are easier and faster to compress by applying a tourniquet above the injury to stop the flow of blood. You can buy high quality tourniquets called CAT Tourniquets from North American Rescue, and they are the gold standard of prepackaged tourniquets.
Many people will immediately think of the risks that come with using a tourniquet, and will remember hearing that research during the Vietnam War and the use of tourniquets lead to amputations of arms and legs. The tourniquets that were issued back then were very narrow, sometimes rope or surgical tubing that lead to significant tissue damage.
New military research after 15 years of the War on Terror show that tourniquets can be left on for a few hours without causing injury to the limbs, hopefully allowing time to get professional medical aid. This research led to the creation of training programs call TCCC, or Tactical Combat Casualty Care which taught front line military personnel how to stop major bleeding with tourniquets and wound packing.
“Wound packing” is what is done with compressible injuries that are in Junctional areas like the Femoral artery in the groin, and they can be much harder to stop the bleeding. Picture the scene in Black Hawk Down where the guy is bleeding from a femoral artery hit, and they are trying to clamp the artery. Wound packing could have been used instead of the clamp and is basically stuffing the hole super tight, right on top of the artery with enough pressure to stop the flow of blood, which stops the life threatening injury.
Wound packing has become much more successful with the addition of Quick Clot and other Hemostatic Agents that are directly applied first, or impregnated into the gauze. Hemostatic Agents are treatments designed to accelerate the clotting of the blood, although pressure is still needed to get the bleeding stopped, and quickly getting to a surgeon is still critical.
While Tactical Combat Casualty Care (TCCC) is the military version of combat medicine, Law Enforcement is adopting the civilian version Tactical Emergency Casualty Care (TECC) and having great success.
Just Google “Police Officer Tourniquets” and you will find hundreds of articles describing officers using TECC training and products to save peoples lives that have received some type of penetrating trauma. Much of the info in TCCC or TECC directly applies to hunters and anyone that spends a great deal of time far away from medical aid, and in close proximity to sharp sticks and things that go bang.
If you want to do your own research, please read any of the attachments at the end of this article. There is also a wide variety of information on the internet that can help you understand the life saving products and training related to TCCC and TECC that are available.
You can purchase North American Rescue medical products, as they are one of the leading manufacturers of medical equipment in the world. Please check out our store if you are interested in purchasing any of their products, you will have a hard time finding better prices on these high quality items, please check them out here in our store North American Rescue products. We have individual tourniquets, and also 2 IFAKs (Individual First Aid Kits) that are perfect for hunters to slip into their pockets or hunting packs, that come equipped with most of the items anyone would need to stop major bleeding.
Whether you purchase from us or not, we are committed to providing people who enjoy the outdoors with this information so that they can make their own decisions about whether to learn about and carry these life saving products. Please be safe out there!
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