EMS Stuff I’m Not Good At, #1


Don’t get me wrong. I know how to splint. I can secure broken bone ends as well as anyone, I suppose.

But you know those artistes that can fashion a traction splint from two rolled magazines, a belt, two popsicle sticks and a pack of Twizzlers?

Yeah, well, I’m not one of those guys. Never was one of those guys, never gonna be one of those guys.

Which probably explains why I spent my last transport with my knee uncomfortably propped under the patient’s left elbow, holding his dislocated shoulder in the position of optimum comfort.

Of course, doping them to the eyeballs before you load them in the rig helps, too. If you’ve got a fracture or dislocation, I’m the medic you want, because I’m going to give you whopping doses of analgesics to make up for my lack of splinting prowess.

  • promedic92

    Yes, I agree. Bus loads of analgesics are my preferred method of splinting also….

  • http://ambulancesboomstickscoffee.blogspot.com Jim (firefighter4884)

    I tend to be a fan of loads of analgesics before we start splinting, and a little more when we start bouncing down the road….

  • Ross

    Paging Dr. Feelgood…

  • Peter

    The best splinters(?) I’ve seen are folks who have worked ski patrol for a few years. At a busy ski area they’ll apply more splints in a day than I will in a year.

  • Beak

    Speaking as someone who spiral fractured their tibia and fibula refereeing a hockey game two years ago, we definitely appreciate the “drugs before movement” approach . . .

  • http://www.realmedics.com/ RealMedics

    Wow, we can totally identify! It seems splinting and bandaging can either be “let’s just get this thing immobile somehow” or “look at my new art form.” We’re definitely with you in the former camp. Thanks for a great blog!

  • Frustrated Medic

    And yet I have arguments daily with people who feel that meds on scene results in too long a scene time and are therefore not worth it. Just do a half ass splint and get ‘em out. After all, if they are sick enough for an ambulance…..

    Well you know the type……

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