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Environmental Emergencies PowerPoint PPT Presentation


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Environmental Emergencies. Heat & Cold emergencies. Ways the body loses heat (1 of 2). Radiation- heat lost from host to air Convection- heat lost through the movement of air Conduction- heat lost from host to solid objects . Ways the body loses heat (2 of 2).

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Environmental Emergencies

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Environmental emergencies l.jpg

Environmental Emergencies

Heat & Cold emergencies


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Ways the body loses heat (1 of 2)

  • Radiation- heat lost from host to air

  • Convection- heat lost through the movement of air

  • Conduction- heat lost from host to solid objects


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Ways the body loses heat (2 of 2)

  • Evaporation- Heat loss through sweating

  • Respiration- Loss of heat through breathing

    (warm air out - cool air in)


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Hypothermia

  • Lowering of the body temperature below 95°F (35ºC)

  • Can develop rapidly or gradually

  • Weather does not have to be below freezing

  • Elderly persons, infants and ill or injured are at higher risk.


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Shivering

Rapid pulse and respirations

Red, pale, cyanotic skin

Signs and Symptoms of Mild Hypothermia


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Shivering stops

Muscular activity decreases

Lethargy/apathy

ALOC

Bradycardia & hypotension

Dilated pupils

Eventually, all muscle activity stops

Signs and Symptoms of More Severe Hypothermia


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Patient may appear dead (or in a coma).

Never assume that a cold, pulseless patient is dead.

Core Temperature Less Than 80ºF


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medical wisdom

  • NOT DEAD UNTIL WARM & DEAD!


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Treatment for Hypothermia

  • handle gently

  • remove from environment

  • high flow oxygen

  • warming measures

  • Ambulance should be heated (86+ degrees)

  • GOAL IS TO PREVENT FURTHER HEAT LOSS


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Frostbite

  • white, cold, hard, waxy skin

  • painful or painless

  • may have blisters or swelling

  • common locations:

    feet - hands - nose - ears


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Frostbite Tx

  • remove from cold

  • high flow O2

  • passive rewarming

  • do not massage

  • do not break blisters


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Heat emergencies

  • Heat cramps

  • Heat exhaustion

  • Heat stroke


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Heat cramps

  • definition = depletion of body salts

    symptoms

  • muscle spasms of legs & abdomen

  • history of exertion with no salt intake


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Treatment for heat cramps

  • remove from environment

  • PO - isotonic solution (if available)


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Heat Exhaustion

  • definition = dehydration with loss of salt

    symptoms

  • cold, moist, ashen skin

  • thirsty

  • headache & nausea

  • weakness, dizziness, syncope


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Treatment for Heat Exhaustion

  • remove patient from environment

  • loosen clothing

  • High flow O2

  • oral fluids (isotonics or water)

  • position of comfort

  • transport


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Heat Stroke

  • definition = failure of body’s cooling mechanism

    Symptoms

  • hot, dry, flushed skin

  • ALOC

  • hypotensive - tachycardia

  • seizure


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Treatment for Heat Stroke

  • remove from environment

  • no oral fluids

  • high flow oxygen

  • cooling measures

  • shock position prn

  • rapid transport


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Water accidents

  • drowning/near drownings

  • diving injuries

    • air embolism

    • bends or decompression sickness


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Near drowning

  • history of underwater episode

  • dyspnea

  • tachypnea

  • laryngospasms

  • ALOC

  • apnea & cyanosis


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Treatment for Near Drowning

  • ABC’s,aggressive suctioning, ventilating with 100% oxygen

  • C-spine precautions

  • Rapid transport

  • Caution:there are delayed complications in near drownings. Always insist on transport even when the patient looks fine.


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Air Embolism

  • caused by holding breath while ascending - air bubbles are forced into blood stream.

    symptoms

  • mottled skin

  • froth at nose/mouth

  • dizziness, headache

  • confusion or ALOC

  • chest pain, dyspnea

  • pain

  • neuro deficits

  • cardiac arrest


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Decompression sickness

  • formation of nitrogen bubbles in blood stream

    Symptoms

  • joint pain

  • abdominal pain

  • itching

  • vertigo, nausea ,vomiting


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Treatment of Air Embolism and Decompression Sickness

  • ABC’s

  • high flow oxygen

  • left lateral trendelenberg

  • rapid transport*

  • consider treatment for hypothermia

  • Transport to hyperbaric chamber


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stop

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