In cases of injury that involve potential head trauma, it is wise to seek immediate medical care if the wounded party exhibits unevenly dilated pupils, vomits repeatedly, experiences loss of mobility, develops severe head or neck pain, becomes tired, or otherwise behaves abnormally. Emergency help is also necessary in cases of lost consciousness, however brief.
Key first aid measures for suspected head trauma include keeping the injured party as still as possible until help arrives, paying particular attention to minimizing movement of the neck. If the injured person is wearing a helmet, it should remain in place.
Responders should stop bleeding by applying direct pressure using sterile gauze or a clean cloth. However, they must not apply pressure to any wound that may involve a skull fracture. While treating for loss of blood and waiting for professional help, responders should continually monitor for breathing and alertness.
Emergency physician Dr. Zachary Lutsky treated acute medical traumas at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center for more than 10 years. Over the decade, Dr. Zachary Lutsky has delivered immediate treatment to people with injuries relating to blunt force accidents, such as concussions and broken bones.
While rarely life-threatening, all broken bones require medical care. Identifying a fractured or broken bone after acute trauma can be difficult. People who have just experienced a fall or accident should go to the emergency room if they notice any of the symptoms below that may indicate a broken bone:
Crepitus: Small bone fragments can make a crackling sound when rubbed together. This sound can indicate that a fracture has occurred.
Bruising: Broken bones can cause capillaries to burst and cause a deep purple or red bruise to emerge. Bone fractures may also injure the surrounding tissue, which can also result in a bruise.
Shock: A severe bone fracture can make blood flow drop precipitously and place the injured person in danger. Common symptoms of shock include pale or cold skin, fainting, and shallow breathing.
Since early intervention can increase heart attack survival rates, it is crucial to administer appropriate first aid while waiting for medical assistance. First, if a person is experiencing heart attack symptoms such as chest tightness, numbness in the left arm, or nausea, he or she should be seated upright against a wall. A bystander can use cushions or pillows to prop the person’s knees up and support the neck and shoulders.
Chewing a 325-milligram aspirin tablet can help reduce blood clots. Any prescribed heart medications like nitroglycerin should also be administered, but no other food or beverage should be offered. It is possible the person will become unconscious, so it is important to remain with the heart attack victim until help arrives.