(From: Street Medics for Tahrir)
Call ambulance if
- Person is shot with a gun.
- Penetrating chest injury
- Person cannot breathe.
- You cannot stop bleeding.
- Person is no longer alert.
- Protect yourself. Do not get cut or shot with a gun while trying to help, and cover your hands with gloves or plastic bags before touching blood.
- Stop all bleeding. Apply pressure to wound for at least 10 minutes and elevate injured area.
- If you can not get to a doctor: For very bad bleeding, put Cayenne pepper powder (Capsicum spp.) in the wound before applying pressure. It hurts, but helps blood vessels to close, helps prevent shock, helps postpone infection.
- Do not remove an impaled object; stabilize impaled object in place and seek medical care.
- For nosebleed, do not tilt head backwards, pinch nose until bleeding stops. (Note: female tampons are great for inserting in nostril to stop a nose bleed if the cut is in the nostril).
- For eye injury, cover eye with clean gauze and seek medical care.
- Keep wound clean. Wash area gently with soap and water without scrubbing as the wound heals.
- When not washing, keep wound area dry. You can put honey on wound to encourage healing. Cover with dry sterile gauze pad or clean cloth.
- Change dressing at least daily or whenever dressing becomes wet or dirty.
- Do not pick at protective scab.
- Tetanus booster shot is recommended if you have not had one in 10 years.
See doctor if:
- Bitten by animal (or person).
- Cut on chest, back, abdomen, face, or hands, unless wound is very small.
- Wound cannot be fully cleaned of debris.
- Any deep puncture wounds.
- Any numbness, weakness, tingling sensation or cannot move beyond the wound.
- Any wound requiring stitches:
- Cannot be closed.
- Deep wound (see white fatty layer).
- Jagged or bruised edges; flaps of skin.
- Wound is in area (like on a joint) where edges may be pulled apart.
- Signs of infection develop (these signs do not occur until at least a day after the injury):
- Increased redness, pain, swelling or warmth.
- Red streaking of surrounding skin.
- Pus draining from area.
- Tender lumps or swelling in armpit, groin, or neck.
- Foul odor from area.
- Generalized chills or fever over 37.5C.
- Not healing well within 1 to 2 weeks.
- If you are immunocompromised, have a chronic illness such as diabetes, or have prosthetic heart valves or orthopedic prostheses, ask your doctor about antibiotics to prevent infection.