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Emergency Survival – Gunshot Wounds (Part 2)

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emergency survivalIf you read Part 1 of the Holistic Survival Gun Shot Survival Guide, you remember our initial suggestions for emergency survival are 1) get the victim away from continued live fire 2) stabilize 3) get them medical attention ASAP. This next issue we thought needed an entire post of it’s own, which is bleeding and how to control it. The odd thing is that some gunshot wounds barely bleed at all, with small entry and exit wounds, and most of the damage being internal.

But then you have those that bleed profusely. Here’s what you need to do in this circumstance.

1. Remove clothing obscuring the wound so you can assess the damage – entry and exit wounds.

2. Using the cleanest available bandage, apply direct pressure to the wound with the heel of your hand for at least 10 minutes. This time span allows some damaged blood vessels to spasm shut and begin the process of blood clotting. Don’t be tempted to peek at the wound during this time. Just hold it!

3. Cold ice packs over the wound will speed along the clotting process. For emergency survival needs, fast clotting is good. That means less blood leaking out of the body

4. If possible, elevate the bleeding area above the heart by having the victim lie down. Once bleeding has subsided, cover the wound with a tightly wrapped, clean bandage, but not so tight they lose feeling in extremities. Keep an eye on the wound for bleed through.

If these measures don’t stop the bleeding, you need to find the nearest main artery that feeds the injured area from the heart. Using fingers, thumb, or hand, apply pressure that pins the artery against the bone and shuts off the flow of blood. The last resort to stop uncontrolled bleeding is to apply a tourniquet, which is nothing more than a tightly wrapped bandage placed near the injury between the heart and wound. Tighten to the point that you can control the bleeding with direct pressure to the wound. Loosen every 10 to 15 minutes to see if it is necessary to keep the tourniquet in place. The danger to tourniquet use is the risk of losing a limb, but if you must do it in an emergency survival situation to save a life…your call.

The Holistic Survival Team

Holistic Survival

Flickr / brykmantra

 

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