Bleeding: Bleeding episodes can be minor, or major, depending on the trauma caused that creates the bleeding situation. Bleeding can lead to symptoms of:
- pale, cool, clammy skin;
- low blood pressure;
- unconsciousness, and
- fast heart rate.
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Cuts or LacerationsCuts and lacerations are both terms that apply to a tear in the skin, though a laceration implies a more jagged tear. These terms do not include abrasions where the skin is scraped away, or avulsions where the skin is torn from the flesh. Cuts and lacerations must be disinfected and sutured in more serious cases. Basic first aid may be all that is necessary for more minor wounds. Infection is the biggest medical concern when it comes to cuts or lacerations. Signs of infection include severe pain, draining pus, redness beyond the wound edges, fever and chills, and excessive wound swelling.
Wilderness: Fractures or DislocationsFractures are breaks in bone and are classified according to several different categories. Compound fractures are the most dangerous; the bone is broken into fragments that come through the skin. Treatment includes setting the broken bone and splinting the injury, among other steps. Steps are taken to prevent infection if the skin is broken.
Wilderness: Marine BiteMany animals in the ocean can bite or cause scrapes and puncture wounds, and some are even venomous. The first step in treatment is to identify the animal, the time of injury and nature of the attack. Then, first aid should be applied as appropriate.
Wilderness: Pressure Immobilization TechniqueThe pressure immobilization technique is the application of a pressure device and immobilization of an affected arm or leg following a venomous bite. After a pressure immobilization application has been applied to an injured person, medical care should be sought emergently at a medical care facility.
Puncture WoundA puncture wound is caused by an object piercing the skin such as nails, glass, pins, or other sharp objects. A puncture wound can become infected if not treated properly. A tetanus booster may be necessary for some puncture wounds.
Wilderness: SplintingA suspected broken bone or dislocation should be immobilized, splinted, or both. Splinting helps to prevent further injury and can provide pain relief.
Wound CareWounds are lacerations, cuts, or punctures in the skin. Wounds can be superficial, deep, punctures, or pressure sores. The amount of pain, inflammation, and bleeding depend on the type of wound. Most superficial wounds can be treated at home. Deep wounds, or complicated wounds generally need medical care. Sutures, staples, or surgical glue for a wound depend on the depth of the wound and the time lapse between the injury and when medical care is sought.
Puncture Wound A puncture wound is caused by an object piercing the skin such as nails, glass, pins, or other sharp objects. A puncture wound can become infected if not treated properly. A tetanus booster may be necessary for some puncture wounds.