What is a medical emergency and how to detect?

By VIVO Healthcare | 25th November 2014 2:11 PM |

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Medical Emergency is an acute condition related to your health. It could be an injury or a sudden illness and requires immediate medical attention. These conditions could also be life threatening.

Medical emergencies vary from minor ailments like cuts wounds, fainting to critical emergencies like stroke, heart attack and sudden cardiac arrest. If recognized in time, given prompt first aid and timely medical attention – many lives can be saved.

Medical emergencies can happen anytime, anywhere to anyone.

It is best to be prepared. Cuts, wounds and fractures in sports field, fall from heights at construction sites, motor vehicles crashes on highway, while a stroke, heart attack or sudden cardiac arrest could happen at work, home or even while driving. It is important to know the Do’s and Don’ts during these situations.

A large number of medical emergencies can be prevented by following safe practices while driving or at work. For example, wearing seat belts, helmets, not talking on mobile phone while driving, making sure to wear your protective equipment at work place. However, Medical emergencies may still happen. It is therefore important to be well trained to handle such situations.

The key aims of first aid can be summarized in three points:

  1. Preserve life
  2. Prevent further harm
  3. Promote recovery

Appropriate first aid and timely medical intervention improves chances of survival and recovery.

If you are prepared to face such situations with confidence and with basic first aid knowledge, it reduces panic and helps you to think clearly in saving a life or limb.

Is it a medical emergency?

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Recognizing a person in pain

During disasters, natural calamities or road accidents, medical emergencies are expected. However if somebody is in distress due to pain, disoriented, looking pale or uncomfortable he could also be undergoing a medical emergency.

A quick sense of what has occurred or is occurring, when you first see a person shall guide your approach. By analyzing how medical emergency has occurred certain types of injuries could be expected and first aid has to be given accordingly.

Visual clue can guide you if the situation is critical.

For example:

  1. A person who seems unconscious and is not moving could be in life-threatening condition.
  2. In case of a motor vehicle crash, multiple injuries are expected including internal injuries which may not be visible.
  3. Incidents like fire and blasts could cause a large number of casualties. These casualties could suffer different types of medical emergencies – while some could have minor injuries, other could be critical and in need of immediate help.

Not taking the necessary precautions while handling the victims could worsen the situation and could lead to permanent disability or death.

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