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Sudden Illnesses

And other first aid emergencies

Heart Attack

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Heart Attack (acute myocardial infarction) occurs when the blood supply to part of the heart muscle is severely reduced or stopped. Coronary thrombosis Coronary embolism Coronary occlusion

Signs and Symptoms

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ncomfortable pressure! fullness! s"uee#ing! or pain in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes or that goes away and comes back. $ain spreading to the shoulders! neck! or arms Chest discomfort with lightheadedness! fainting! sweating! nausea! or shortness of breath.

%hat to do      &on't delay( take prompt action Call )*S *onitor A+C's and give C$. . +e calm and reassuring /ive nitroglycerin tablets if patient is a heart patient. if necessary Help victim into the least painful position! usually a half-sitting position. .oosen tight clothing.

%hy patients delay calling for help       0hought the symptoms would go away 0hought the symptoms were not severe enough 0hought it was a different illness %orried about medical costs Afraid of hospitals 1eared being embarrassed    %anted to wait for a better time &id not want to find out what was wrong Average time between symptom onset and hospital arrival was 2 hours( 234 waited 5 hour( 664 waited 5 to 6( 574 waited 6 to 8( 264 waited more than 6 hours. .

cclusion  Aneurism  .uptured blood vessel (hemorrhagic stroke)  .Stroke  A stroke! or cerebrovascular accident! occurs when o9ygen is denied to a portion of the brain as a result of disrupted blood flow: 0hrombosis  )mbolism  .

.%hat to look for       %eakness! numbness! or paralysis of the face! an arm! or a leg on one side of the body +lurred or decreased vision! especially in one eye $roblems speaking or understanding &i##iness or loss of balance Sudden! severe! and une9plained headache &eviation of the eyes from $)A. (Pupils E"ual And Reactive to Light)! which may mean the brain is being affected by lack of o9ygen .

If you suspect a stroke! but are not sure apply these three simple tests    Arm strength (both arms): person closes eyes and holds both arms out with palms down. If one arm does not move and the other drifts down! suspect a stroke. . If one side of face does not move as well as the other side! suspect a stroke. If grip strength is not e"ual! suspect a stroke. 1acial smile: person smiles or shows teeth. Hand grip (both hands): person grips two of your fingers at the same time. Slowly count to five.

if necessary If the victim is conscious! lay the victim down with the head and shoulders slightly elevated &o not give a stroke victim anything to drink or eat. . 0he throat may be paraly#ed! which restricts swallowing.%hat to do     Call )*S If victim is unresponsive! check A+C's( give C$.

and accounts for an annual death toll of 8!===>. 0here can be an increase in mucous production and<or inflammation (within the trachea! bronchi! and<or the lungs). . *ortality rates have increased over ?24 since 5@?=.    Asthma sufferers may have acute episodes brought on by specific triggers.S. Asthma affects an estimated 5= million people in the .    0he muscles that surround the airways can become tight! producing muscle spasms.Asthma  Asthma is a chronic! inflammatory lung disease characteri#ed by repeated breathing problems. 0he inner lining of the airways may swell.

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) %eather changes! e.Asthma triggers       Allergens (animal dander! dust! mites! molds! pollens! foodsespecially seafood A peanuts! etc.ung irritants (tobacco smoke! leaf burning smoke! perfume! chalk! dust! etc.) .g.) )9ercise and overe9ertion )9citement . cold air Infections (colds! sinus infections! etc.

)arly %arning Signs of an Asthma Attack       Coughing with no cold %hee#ing (however light)! especially upon e9haling 1ast<irregular breathing pset stomach 0ickly throat An9iousness .

Severe Symptoms of Asthma       Student stops whee#ing! especially with other symptoms. Increased an9iety Cyanosis (bluish skin color) Increased effort to breathe Bostrils flaring with each breath %orsening of any early warning signs .

If the victim does not respond to his or her inhaled medication! seek medical attention immediately.%hat to do       Ceep the victim in a comfortable upright position and leaning slightly forward. Ask the victim about any asthma medication he or she may be using. /enerally the victim will dictate what position is most tolerable! usually sitting up since that makes it easier to breathe. Check and monitor A+C's. . 0his is known as the DtripodE position. sually the victim will have an inhaler nearby. 0ry to calm and reassure( help rela9 the victim Administer warm fluids if possible.

ow blood sugar  &ehydration  Heat e9haustion  Anemia  .1ainting   A sudden brief loss of consciousness not associated with a head inFury. Sight of blood  Strong fear  . Can have either physical or emotional causes.

%hat to look for  A person who is about to faint usually will have one or more of the following signs and symptoms: &i##iness  %eakness  Seeing spots  Gisual blurring  Bausea  $ale skin  Sweating  .

.oosen tight clothing at the neck and waist. 0his position increases venous blood flow back to the heart! which in turn pumps more blood to the brain. .If a person appears about to faint     $revent the person from falling Help the person lie down and raise the legs 3 to 52 inches. Stay with the victim until he or she recovers.

If the victim has fallen! check for any sign of inFury. . . 1resh air and a cold! wet cloth for the face usually aid recovery. After recovery! have the victim sit for a while and! when he or she is able to swallow! give cool! sweetened li"uids to drink! and slowly help the victim regain an upright posture.If fainting has happened or is anticipated       Check A+C's.oosen tight clothing and belts. If inFuries allow! turn victim into recovery position.

oses consciousness while sitting or lying down! . .r faints for no apparent reason. &o not:     Splash or pour water on the victim's face se smelling salts or ammonia inhalants Slap the victim's face in an attempt to revive him or her /ive the victim anything to drink until he or she has fully recovered and can swallow.Seek medical attention! if:      0he victim has had repeated attacks of unconsciousness! &oes not "uickly regain consciousness! .

A variety of medical conditions can lead to sei#ures! including the following: )pilepsy  Heat stroke  $oisoning  )lectric shock  Hypoglycemia  High fever in children  +rain inFury! tumor! or stroke  Alcohol withdrawal! drug abuse<overdose  .Sei#ures   A sei#ure is the result of an abnormal stimulation of the brain's cells.

DStaring off into spaceE for a brief time. Characteri#ed by a brief loss of consciousness. sually cause one part of the body such as one side of the face or an arm to twitch.  1ocal motor sei#ures   $sychomotor (temporal-lobe) sei#ures   $etit mal sei#ures  .0ypes of Sei#ures  /enerali#ed motor sei#ures (grand mal)  Characteri#ed by loss of consciousness! muscle contraction! and sometimes tongue biting! loss of bladder control! and mental confusion. Characteri#ed by an altered personality state and are often preceded by di##iness or a peculiar metallic taste in the mouth. sually followed by a period of coma or drowsiness.

.oll the victim onto his or her side.oosen tight clothing( especially around neck. . 0hey end after a minute or two without harm and usually do not re"uire medical attention.ook for a medical-alert tag As the sei#ure ends! offer your help. . *ost sei#ures in people with epilepsy are not medical emergencies. .%hat to do  1or convulsions and grand mal sei#ures:      Cushion the victim's head( remove items that could cause inFury if the person were to bump into them.

A sei#ure lasts more than five minutes. 0he victim is pregnant or has another medical condition. .Call )*S if:      A sei#ure happens to someone who is not known to have epilepsy or sei#ure disorder( it could be a sign of serious illness. 0here are any signs of inFury or illnesses. 0he victim is slow to recover! has a second sei#ure! or has difficulty breathing afterward.

&o not:      /ive the victim anything to eat or drink. $ut anything between the victim's teeth during the sei#ure.estrain the victim. . . Splash or pour any li"uid on the victim's face. *ove the victim to another place (unless it is the only way to protect the victim from inFury).

&iabetes  A chronic illness in which the pancreas fails to produce enough insulin! and<or when insulin cell receptors are defective! an e9cess of sugar is carried throughout the blood stream. .

. If left untreated over time! this e9cess in sugar levels can cause permanent visual problems! organ damage (especially to the kidneys)! cardiovascular disorders! and possible death.&iabetes H Symptoms   Initial symptoms generally include weight loss! visual disorders! increased thirst<hunger! fre"uent urination! fatigue! irritability! and nausea.

.e"uires daily insulin inFections and sometimes oral medication. Caused by recessive gene that may become activated after an illness! such as strep or mono! especially during a growth spurt (age 7-8! 5=-55! etc.).0ype I &iabetes    Also known as juvenile diabetes .

0ype I &iabetes  Considered an autoimmune disorder whereby the white blood cells attack the pancreas (beta cells) that normally produce insulin. . 0he beta cells will become completely destroyed generally within a year! re"uiring insulin shots<pump<inhaler.

.0ype II &iabetes    Also known as adult onset diabetes /enerally treated with diet! e9ercise! and oral medications. *ost e9perts consider it preventable.

&iabetes   Bormal blood sugar levels average from 3=-52=. . A level of up to 5I= is generally considered acceptable for an insulin dependent diabetic.

Symptoms: sudden onset! irritability (cry! belligerent! etc. .)! hungry (especially a craving for sweets)! perspire e9cessively! trembling! di##y<disoriented<pale! pulse is generally full and normal.&iabetic )mergencies     Insulin shock H 0oo much insulin (giving a shot with too much insulin( lack of activity( not eating for a long period of time( etc.) Also known as low blood sugar (blood sugar levels less than 3=). 0his condition is potentially life threatening.

1irst Aid for Insulin Shock     If victim is known diabetic! his or her mental status is altered! and is awake enough to swallow: D. Symptoms should subside within 5=57 minutes. .ule of 57'sE /ive the person some form of sugar such as a sugar cube! soda! candy! raisins! prescribed candy! honey or corn syrup.

&iabetic coma

0oo little insulin (failure to take insulin shot( not having enough insulin with shot( over-activity( illness( improper diet of sugars! alcohol! etc.) High blood sugar H blood sugar levels above 2I=. .evels e9ceeding 6== can cause kidney and cardiovascular damage.

1irst Aid for &iabetic Coma

Symptoms: gradual onset( pulse weak and rapid! thirsty! fre"uent urination! flushed face! vomiting<nausea! fruity breath odor! labored breathing! craving for sweets! irritable 0his condition is not immediately life threatening but can result in kidney damage! eye damage! nerve damage! heart damage! etc.! over an e9tended period of time (years).

*ake sure that the victim rests( maintaining body temperature( letting the victim (or medical staff) administer an insulin shot( seeking medical attention.

$oisoning emergencies  0ypes of poisoning:  Ingested  Inhaled  Absorbed  InFected .

Signs of Swallowed $oisoning       Abdominal pain and cramping Bausea or vomiting &iarrhea +urns! stains! odor near or in mouth &rowsiness or unconsciousness $oison containers .

First Aid for Swallowed Poisons (1 of 3) 5. If poison is corrosive or caustic! dilute by having victim drink water or milk . &etermine critical information Age and si#e of victim  %hat was the poisonJ  How much was takenJ  %hen was it swallowedJ  2.

$lace victim in recovery position .First Aid for Swallowed Poisons (2 of 3) 6. 1or responsive victim! call poison control center I. 1or unresponsive victim! check A+Cs and call @-5-5 7.

First Aid for Swallowed Poisons (3 of 3) 8. If advised! induce vomiting ?. If advised! give activated charcoal 3. Save poison containers! plants! and victim's vomit to help medical personnel identify poison .

Activated Charcoal     )ffective Acts as a sponge &oes not absorb all poisons /ive only in pre-mi9ed form .

Call poison control center .ook for inFuries 2. Check A+C and treat 6. $lace victim in recovery position I. .1irst Aid for Alcohol )mergency (5 of 2) 5.

$rovide emotional support ?. Assume inFured or unconscious victim has a spinal inFury 3. . If victim has been e9posed to the cold! suspect hypothermia .1irst Aid for Alcohol )mergency (2 of 2) 7.eave scene if victim is violent 8.

Signs of Carbon ono!ide Poisoning      1lu-like complaints! but no fever Symptoms come and go Symptoms worsen or improve in certain places or times of day Bearby people have similar complaints $ets seem ill .

$oisoning      .1irst Aid for C.emove victim from environment immediately Call )*S *onitor A+C $lace unresponsive victim on side Seek medical attention .

Poison "v#$ %a&$ S'(ac   .eaflets 6! let it beE  .esin is slightly yellow light oil Identification:  D.ocations  *ore than 8= plants  D+lack spotE test .

1or severe cases! consult doctor for corticosteroid .First Aid for Poison "v#$ %a&$ S'(ac 5. %ash with soapy water or rubbing alcohol 2. 1or mild cases! use calamine lotion! oatmeal baths! baking soda paste 6.

Heat and cold inFuries .

Heat .oss from the +ody 1ive ways that the body loses heat  Conduction  Convection  )vaporation  .adiation  .espiration .

isk of 1rostbite      )9posure to below free#ing temperature )9posure to high winds )9posure to high altitude  se of tobacco! alcohol! drugs Contact with metal or gasoline $revious frostbite inFury .Increased .

bstructs blood supply +ody areas most affected are feet! hands! ears! nose .1rostbite     Can cause severe damage resulting in gangrene and amputation 1ree#es tissue .

0ypes of 1rostbite $re-thaw  Superficial K skin feels cold and crusty on top! while soft underneath. Skin does not blanch  &eep K skin feels cold and hard $ost-thaw  Similar to burns K superficial! semi-thickness and fullthickness .

. Seek medical attention .emove victim from cold 2. .1irst Aid for 1rostbite 5.emove tight clothing 6.

ub or massage  .Cautions for 1rostbite &.0  +reak blisters  .e-e9pose to cold  0haw if there is a possibility of refree#ing  Allow alcohol or smoking . B.

emote 1irst Aid for 1rostbite If in a remote location! use wet! rapid rewarming 5. $lace dry! sterile dressings between toes and fingers 6. /ive aspirin or ibuprofen .. Slightly elevate part I. $lace body part in warm water (5=2-5=7 L1) 2.

Chronic (urban) e9posure .Hypothermia . Acute (immersion) e9posure 2.0ypes of )9posure 5. Sub-acute (mountain or e9haustion) e9posure 6.

0ypes of Hypothermia (5 of 2) *ild K body temperature higher than @=L1  Signs: Shivering  Cold abdomen  .

0ypes of Hypothermia (2 of 2) Severe or profound K body temperature less than @=L1  Signs:  *uscles rigid  Shivering stopped  Altered mental status  7=-3=4 of victims die .

1irst Aid for Hypothermia (5 of 2) 1) Sto* heat loss M +et victi( o't of cold M Cover victi( with ins'lation M Re*lace wet clothing M Cover the head M .andle victi( gentl# 2) Call E S for trans*ort .

1or mild hypothermia  Allow shivering I.1irst Aid for Hypothermia (2 of 2) 6. 1or severe hypothermia  Check A+C  )vacuate by helicopter or ambulance .

ewarm outside of hospital .0  /ive alcohol  /ive a warm drink  Start C$. until pulse has been checked for 6=. B.I7 seconds  .Cautions for Hypothermia (5 of 2) &.

0 stop shivering by:  Immersing in warm water  sing chemical heat packs  +ody-to-body contact . B.Cautions for Hypothermia (2 of 2) &.

ule of 7=sE  7=-year-old man  7=L1 water  7= minutes in water  7=:7= chance of survival .Immersion Hypothermia D.

eat Stro&e    )9tremely hot skin K usually dry! but may be wet Altered mental status M If responsive! maybe confused and<or agitated M nresponsive Coma .Signs of .

eat Stro&e 5. .emove clothing down to underwear I. *ove to cool place 6.First Aid for . .apidly cool . Check A+C 2. Seek medical attention 7.

Cooling ethods for .eat Stro&e Cooling method based on humidity  If humidity less than ?74! use water and fan  If humidity more than ?74! use ice<cold packs on neck! armpits! and groin .

se rubbing alcohol sponging or baths K can be absorbed into blood and vapors can ignite.. /ive aspirin or acetaminophen K they do not affect hypothalmic set-point .%/S    Continue cooling after victim's mental status improves K danger of hypothermia.eat Stro&e -% .

.ther Heat Illnesses    Heat syncope Heat edema $rickly heat .

Signs of .eat E!ha'stion     $rofuse sweating 1lu-like symptoms (headache! nausea! vomiting! fatigue! di##y) .apid pulse 0hirst .

First Aid for .eat E!ha'stion 5. . . /ive cool li"uids 6. If no improvement in 6= minutes! seek medical attention .aise victim's legs 3 to 52 inches I.emove e9cess clothing 7. *ove to a cool place 2. Sponge and fan victim 8.

eat Cra(*s 5. . /ive lightly salted or electrolyte drink 6.est in a cool place 2. Stretch cramped muscle  se acupressure method K pinch upper lip Fust below the nose .First Aid for .

S*orts -rin&s Should electrolytes be addedJ  Gictim very unlikely to have deficiency M )9ception K if physical activity e9ceeds I hours .

0ater How important is waterJ  Average adult re"uires 2 "uarts a day  0hirst not a good indicator  D.ule of 6sE 6 minutes without o9ygen 6 days without water 6 weeks without food .