Amputation: First Aid


– Amputations. Amputations, such as fingers and toes, are scarily, not that unusual. The easiest way is probably
to start with a story. One of my friends was in hospital having her second child. And her husband was
looking after the toddler. And there was Joe, and he said, “Come on,
Joe, let’s go and see mum.” He got out the buggy, he put his foot on the back of the buggy and didn’t realise that Joe’s
finger was in the mechanism and Joe’s finger came off. So what do you think
the priority should be? So, first of all, the
child, not the finger. Grab that poor child, look
after them, reassure them, and apply direct pressure
to their injured finger. Okay, so apply direct pressure. Control that bleeding and reassure the child. Then turn your attention to the finger. What you should be doing with the finger is picking it up, wrapping it in some
non-fluffy clean material, so please don’t wrap it in loo roll or cotton roll or anything, cos that will be fluffy and that will make it really difficult when it gets to hospital
and we have to clean it. Then what you would do is put it in a plastic bag. So you put it in an ordinary food bag or something like that. And then you would put it
onto an ice pack to chill it. We’re meat, and what you’re
doing is preserving it so that it’s in the
best possible condition so it can be sewn back on in hospital. Please don’t be tempted to wash it. We’ll clean it in hospital because if you wash it, you will lose some of those
really important nerves or little vessels that we’ll need to be able to sew it together. Make sure you don’t give the
child anything to eat or drink because they will need surgery, and make sure you take
the finger and the child to hospital at the same time.