What to Do If Someone's Bleeding Badly

What to Do If Someone's Bleeding Badly

By knowing how to stop bleeding, you could save the life of a seriously injured person.

Analysis of mass tragedies such as the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in 2012 revealed that many victims could have been saved if bystanders had known how to control their bleeding, according to Dr. Justin Chandler, a trauma surgeon at Penn State's Hershey Medical Center.

Penn State is part of a national program called "Stop the Bleed" that offers training in how to deal with bleeding in injured people. Similar training efforts already exist for such things as providing cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) or using an automated external defibrillator (AED) to restore a normal heart rhythm.

"People can bleed to death in less than 3 minutes with very bad injuries," Chandler said in a university news release. "But we can teach you a variety of techniques to control bleeding using virtually nothing."

This could be life-saving in many circumstances, Kimberly Patil, an injury prevention and outreach coordinator with the adult trauma program at the medical center, said in the news release. For instance, "you might be the first one on the scene to a car crash, a kitchen knife injury, a hunting accident or a traumatic farm injury," she said.

"First, assure your own safety," Patil advised. "You never want to put yourself in danger to help someone else. Then to help you remember what to do next, follow the ABCs of response to a bleeding injury":

  • A for alert. Call 911.
  • B for bleeding. Finding the injury that's causing the bleeding.
  • C for compression. Apply pressure to the site of bleeding, preferably with a clean cloth or wound packing.

Generally, Chandler said, "you want to lock your elbows and push on the area to control the bleeding as best you can." He noted, however, that this approach is not very effective for chest or abdomen bleeds.

More information

The American Academy of Family Physicians outlines what you should have in your first aid kit.


Copyright © 2013-2017 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Mental Health Does Not Come With A Manual, It Comes With Friends & Family Support That Never Gives Up!
Join now

Related Content

What If Your Anxiety & Depression Is Really A Sign Of ADHD?
What If Your Anxiety & Depression Is Really A Sign Of ADHD?

More often than not, when a person over the age of 10 is diagnosed with attentio...

Read more
New Patent By OxyContin Maker May Treat Pain But Comes With Addictive Potential
New Patent By OxyContin Maker May Treat Pain But Comes With Addictive Potential

Purdue Pharma, the maker of OxyContin, has received a patent designed to treat o...

Read more
Why Are Transgenders Experiencing More Mental Health Issues Than The General Public?
Why Are Transgenders Experiencing More Mental Health Issues Than The General Public?

Individuals who identify as transgender tend to experience higher rates of menta...

Read more
New Research In Schizophrenia Shows That A Video Game Can Aid In Preventing Hallucinations
New Research In Schizophrenia Shows That A Video Game Can Aid In Preventing Hallucinations

People with schizophrenia can be trained by playing a video game to control the ...

Read more
I was 12 When I Survived 9-11 But My Peers & I Are Only Now Realizing Our PTSD
I was 12 When I Survived 9-11 But My Peers & I Are Only Now Realizing Our PTSD

As the Twin Towers burned and eventually collapsed on 9/11, I was running from m...

Read more
How Running Helped These Everyday People Beat OCD, Depression & Anxiety
How Running Helped These Everyday People Beat OCD, Depression & Anxiety

When documentary photographer Martin Eberlen was diagnosed with ADHD in his earl...

Read more