People, all throughout the day, tend to a lot of things including work, caring for family, tending to personal needs and a lot more. With all these activities, accidents occur every once in a while. Worst case scenario, some people even experience an accidental amputation. When this happens, amputation (accidental) first aid must be applied to the patient immediately in order to prevent the worsening of the situation.
First Aid For Amputation (accidental)
Stay calm and do not panic
Before doing any amputation (accidental) first aid, make sure that you are calm and not in a panic. This way, you can show your patient that you really know what you are doing instead of causing further panic to the patient. Quickly call an ambulance.
Stop the bleeding
When applying amputation (accidental) first aid, make it a point that you are able to stop the bleeding first. However, before touching the wounded part of your patient, see to it that you have thoroughly washed your hands in order to prevent contamination. If possible, have your patient lie down. In case you suspect that your patient is suffering from a head, back, neck, or leg injury, do not reposition him/her.
Elevate the injured area and apply direct pressure to the wound for about fifteen (15) minutes using a clean cloth or bandage. You can do this method up to three times. However, if something is in the wound, you must not apply direct pressure. Instead, put pressure on the area surrounding the wound.
If the patient’s blood drenches the cloth or bandage, use another bandage. Remember not to remove the first covering off. In the event that the bleeding is severe, use a compression bandage or a tourniquet.
Protect the patient’s wound
When applying amputation (accidental) first aid, see to it that the patient’s injury is wrapped or covered with a clean cloth or sterile dressing. This way, infection and further contamination of the wound will be prevented.
Do not throw away the amputated part
In some cases of an accidental amputation, the amputated part can still be reattached. Because of this, see to it that you save your patient’s amputated part. If possible, rinse it with clean water in order to remove dirt and other foreign objects. Never use soap or scrub in cleaning the amputated part.
Afterwards, the amputated part must be put in a clean plastic bag. This way, the part won’t be infected or contaminated by bacteria and other harmful organisms. Put the bag in a container full of ice in order to slow down the decomposition of the amputated part and bring it with you to the hospital.
The success rate of reattaching amputated part
The success rate of reattaching the amputated part back to the patient varies and is on a case to case basis. The success rate depends on the following factors:
- The amputated body part
- The state of the amputated piece
- Elapsed time since amputation
- The time of the patient to receive medical care
- The overall health condition of the patient