First-Aid situations you've encountered in the backcountry

86tuning

Adventurer
Yep plenty of mountainbike stuff. Dealt with some random dude on Whistler with a broken leg, snapped it just above the ankle. Just stacked rocks to stabilize it til the EMTs arrived.

My buddy separated his clavicle on a ride, stabilized with two inner tubes tied across the chest and gave him all the painkillers we had on hand. Hiked him to the car and then drove to the hospital.
 

LR Max

Local Oaf
To be honest, the biggest issue I have out in the woods is insect bites. My girlfriend somehow attracts every mosquito in a 10 mile radius. Its actually fairly impressive but the complaining quickly outpaces that.

I've seen other campers spread out mosquito and insect killer at campsites (private campsites) and that seems to work quite well. Its just the stuff you buy in a 5 lb bucket at Lowes. Spread it around and helps out a lot with the local critters. I'd suggest that to take care of your concern about mosquitoes, spiders, bees, and probably snakes as well at the campsite (also reduces mosquito bites and dealing with that). That combined with buying out REI of the bug repellent bands seems to minimize the issues.

Besides that, the choking thing is something small that can turn super serious quickly. Do research and now what to do. Also learn how to properly wrap an ankle to brace it with an ACE bandage. Other than that, stay smart and ya'll should be ok.

Oh and don't go into the woods with a pre-existing condition. An example mentioned on the previous page, something like coughing up blood. Yeah, don't wait until you are 200 miles from civilization to address this issue.

Oh another cool thing for kids, buy a bunch of glow stick bracelets and necklaces. At night, put them on the kids so as they run around, you KNOW where they are. I've seen that at a number of events and its nice for parents to look over their shoulder, immediately see the kids via their glow stick markers, and know everything is ok.

Dunno, just throwing out crap here.
 

Kiwi-Yank

Adventurer
Heat exhaustion - lack of fluids on very hot days.
Guy was lethargic, hardly talking, very hot.
We got fluids into him, made him sit in the shade - he pulled together.
very risky when people get too far gone.

Kiwi-Yank
 

LR Max

Local Oaf
Heat exhaustion - lack of fluids on very hot days.
Guy was lethargic, hardly talking, very hot.
We got fluids into him, made him sit in the shade - he pulled together.
very risky when people get too far gone.

Kiwi-Yank
That is a very good point. I see many people in non-outdoor situations that complain of dehydration. It can happen super easy and super fast.

Keep fluids in people.
 

tibfibber

Observer
I've stocked oral rehydration salts in my kit ever since doing a trackday (motorcycle) in 118' heat. Dehydration, and heat exhaustion is pretty common out there and usually overtakes people before they are fully aware of how much they are incapacitated.
 

stioc

Expedition Leader
Help me understand something very basic- I realize this should be in the book 'things you wanted to know but were afraid to ask' lol So we lose salts from the body by sweating and that's why we take ORS. However, at sea they tell you not to drink sea water directly because of the salt in it- doesn't this kinda contradict the ORS purpose, what am I missing?
 

ssssnake529

Explorer
I've had to "stitch" someone up with superglue and butterflies. A deep cut, 4 inches long that would have merited a trip the ER if we were near civilization.
 

Fireman78

Expedition Leader
Wow, cool topic. I had to scan the old memory banks but I did remember a few. I think these few were all in Montana: Skycrane coming in to dump a load of water into a 3000 gallon folding tank... Blows folding tank off hilltop into a guy. Busted him up, busted ribs, ect. Guy sharpening a Pulaski, literally SHAVED OFF the fat part of the palm of his hand. Guy gets clobbered by a tree someone else fell. Seperated shoulder, back inj, head inj. Use Nat. Guard Helo guys to extract him. Rafting the Delores River in SW Colorado, a woman smashed the living :-X:-\:%*&# out of her hand on the oar buckle thingy, I helped get her out of the wilderness area to a hosp using some local, banjo playing individuals.. That was a challenge. Helped pack a mountain biker with a broken neck out of the Sandia mountians on a wheeled sked. In northern California I was doing some FS work marking trees and knocked over a stump with bald faced hornets, I was stung over 30 times. Swelled up pretty bad, the EMT on the crew hooked me up with epi, Beynadryl, albutoral, ect. Isn't the wilderness fun? :) Last summer in Roswell I was seconds away from stepping on a six foot long western Diamondback... glad I had good karma that day!
 

Fireman78

Expedition Leader
Help me understand something very basic- I realize this should be in the book 'things you wanted to know but were afraid to ask' lol So we lose salts from the body by sweating and that's why we take ORS. However, at sea they tell you not to drink sea water directly because of the salt in it- doesn't this kinda contradict the ORS purpose, what am I missing?
Seawater contains an extremely high level of salt. In order for your kidneys to excrete the salt, it would pull every drop of water from your body to do so. You simply can't process that level of salt. One of the axioms I learned in Paramedic school was "Water follows salt". As far as the ORS I believe they contain the perfect bkend of salt, glucose and water to allow the body to absorb it without kidney damage and to allow cellular hydration. AVOID SEAWATER!!

Sent from my GT-P7310 using Tapatalk 2
 
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tibfibber

Observer
I'm sure there is someone with much better experience who can explain, but here's the wki:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oral_rehydration_therapy


The following makes me think that there are some very good reasons why salted lassi is a common drink in India. Chaas, and other variants are also found in the region...

The World Health Organizations states that some home products can be used to treat and prevent dehydration. This includes salted rice water, salted yogurt drink, and salted vegetable or chicken soup. A home-made solution of one litre of plain water with 3 grams table salt (one level half teaspoonful) and 18 grams common sugar (three tablespoons) can also be made. And a medium amount of salt can also be added to water in which cereal has been cooked, unsalted soup, green coconut water, unsweetened weak tea, and unsweetened fruit juice.[16] The homemade solution should have the "taste of tears."[17] If available, supplemental zinc and potassium can be added to or given with the homemade solution.[16]
It sounds like the proportions of glucose and salt are fairly important.
http://apps.who.int/medicinedocs/en/d/Js4950e/2.4.html#Js4950e.2.4
 

Kiwi-Yank

Adventurer
stuff happens.
i have seen a lot of things go wrong.
hyporthermia, diabetic shock, heat stroke, dislocated shoulders and legs, scalp lacerations, hand sliced by machete, fractured ribs from motorcycle accident, rib and back injuries from horse riding accident, drowning and parrtial drowning (scuba), the bends (scuba). most of this stuff did not happen to me - it happened to people around me.

i definitely recommend you invest your time in a first aid class.
try the wilderness EMT class - if you can find one around.
even those classes don't teach you all that you need to know ... but it is a very good start.

K-Y
 

cdthiker

Meandering Idaho
Medcine is constantly changing, a lot of what we think we know has now been proven to be not true...
To be blunt, your asking the wrong question, it is not what have WE seen but what MIGHT YOU have to deal with ....

As an urban EMT, and a WEMT ( wilderness emt) I have seen a lot.

When I am not working on an ambulance I teach Wilderness First responder classes.

Some fun facts

Most common reason people are evaced out of the back county is for some sort of GI distress ( bad belly) the most common reason? Fecal oral contamination.
Second most common reason, some sort of athletic injury. Most common, injured ankle .


Here is what it really comes down to, Sat phones and beacons dont work when you want them to, first aid kits get lost/ destroyed/ used up all the way, and people get hurt.

Training, is the number one best tool in your first aid kit. Hands down. Your training might be the difference between doing a full assessment on a loved on and deciding that they can stay and play based off of facts and evidence, where before you might have freaked out and and called in the chopper. and suddenly you have a 30k bill.

If you are not sold on the training the best thing you can put in the first aid kit is as follows

1. BSI ( body substance isolation) ( Gloves)
2. two rolls of tape
3. some sort of field guide or manual small sized that can walk you through recommend protocols and treatments.
4. small leatherman/multi tool/ knife
5. Irrigation syringe

everything else, can be improvised, and I mean just about everything. there is nothing that can beat good judgement, sound decision making skills, and solid risk management.


Keep in mind there is a LOT of bogus BS nonsense medicine and toys out there. People are trying to make money and will market just about anything. Keep your eyes open for stuff that sounds to good to be true. Top of the list, snake bite kits, salts, sam splints, and triple antibiotic cream

Go get trained. I might be the one thing standing between you and a major problem.

Check out these programs all very solid

Feel free to PM me with questions this is my passion and my job.


WMI ( runs a lot of courses out of CA)
SOLO
WMA
Desert Mountain Medicine
AARIE
 

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