Sprains and Strains
Sprains and Strains (injured, stretched or torn muscles, tendons, and ligaments) as well as dislocations and fractures. Here are some good first aid tips.
Sprains and Strains. Important Information.
- Remember the word RICE for general treatment – Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation for the first 72 hours after injury.
- The patient should consult a medical professional to determine the extent of the injury and to endure no bones are broken.
- Encourage to follow up with a doctor if the victim: 1) has severe or uncontrolled pain, 2) has a foot or ankle that is misshapen beyond normal swelling, 3) cannot walk four steps, even with a limp or 4) has severe pain when pressing over the bumps on each side of the ankle.
Sprains and Strains. Patient Care.
- REST – take the stress off the injured area and avoid use as much as possible.
- ICE – apply a cold compress to the injured area for up to 20 minutes. Repeat icing a least four times a day.
- COMPRESSION – wrap area wit elastic bandage.
- ELEVATE – raise the injured area above the heart as much as possible.
- If the patient must use the injured area, tape, or splint to provide stability and prevent further injury. Anti-inflammatory pain medications will reduce pain and swelling. Check with a doctor prior to giving pain medication.
Dislocations and Fractures
- A dislocation occurs when a great deal of pressure is placed on a joint. The patient’s joint appears deformed and the injury is very painful.
- Suspect a fracture if, after a fall or blow, a limb appears to be in an unnatural position, is not useable, swells, or bruise rapidly or is extremely painful at a specific point.
- Only splint an injury if EMS care or transport to a medical facility is delayed and if you can do so without causing more discomfort and pain to the patient.
- All dislocations and fractures need professional medical attention.
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