In this video, we are going to look at treating an embedded object in the body. An embedded object is where something goes into the body. If it’s just something small like grains of dirt or grit you can just wash the wound under a tap and then that will come out. If it’s something that is just stuck on to the skin and you can remove it safely.
When we are looking at embedded objects we are dealing with something which is actually in the body like a knife or a lump of glass. The important thing is we do not want to remove it. If there is a piece of glass in the body then you remove it, what will happen is the glass is basically plugging the hole and as you pull it out, you will cut more tissue on the way out and lose more blood.
Another example of an embedded object is a knife wound. The knife has cut on the way in and it will cut on the way out. You may do more damage like cutting an artery or vein. Leaving the knife in the body will continue to plug the hole and reduce blood loss and damage. The knife would then be removed in the hospital. There are many reports within the medical profession, of people who die due to stab wounds and the doctors say “If the knife had been left in, I would of had more chance of saving that person.” Within first aid what we need to do is leave the item in.
With your gloves on what you need to do is take two dressings to apply them on either side of the embedded object. Then we use another dressing to carefully bandage that in place. The two dressings on either side of the item are used to hold it in place and the dressing is there to support all the dressings. Once you put the bandage on check for bleeding to make sure we have control of the bleeding and depending on where the injury is, you may be able to elevate an arm in an elevation sling but it is important to make sure you don’t put the sling over the embedded object which could cause it to push in. This goes for the dressings as well, make sure that there’s nothing going to happen to actually make the injury worse in the transport to a hospital. Embedded objects will need to be removed in a hospital so we need to get the person to the emergency services as quickly as possible.
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