Haemostatic Dressing or Tourniquet?

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Choosing the Right Bleeding Control Method

Selecting the appropriate method to control bleeding depends on the injury's location and the circumstances. This guide helps you decide between haemostatic dressings and tourniquets for effective bleeding management.

Haemostatic Dressings: When and Where to Use

Haemostatic dressings are the only option for injuries not located on limbs. However, they are not suitable for open head or chest wounds. They are most effective on the abdomen and junctional areas of the body.

Decision Making for Limb Injuries

  • Initial Step: Direct pressure should always be your first attempt to control bleeding on arms or legs.
  • Choosing Between Tourniquets and Haemostatic Dressings: If direct pressure fails, the choice between a tourniquet and a haemostatic dressing depends on the specific injury, the patient's size, and the number of patients needing attention.

Tourniquets vs Haemostatic Dressings

Tourniquets provide immediate bleeding control, allowing attention to be directed to other patients if necessary. Haemostatic dressings, on the other hand, are better suited for smaller or puncture wounds but require several minutes to become effective.

Making the Right Choice

Evaluating the situation carefully is crucial. Consider the resources at your disposal, the number of casualties, and the nature of their injuries to determine the best approach or combination of methods for bleeding control.

Learning Outcomes:
  • IPOSi Unit three LO3.1, 3.2, 3.3 & 3.4