Do you know how to stop blood loss in an emergency?
Use the Heimlich maneuver?
Life-saving procedures were taught by Amherst Steele High School students Sept. 26 during a first aid and safety wellness fair organized by teacher Kim Haney.
Junior medical technology students Alex Boyles and Camden Gross walked us through the proper way to clear an obstructed airway and save someone from suffocation.
Start behind the person who is choking: “Wrap around under the victim’s arms, make one of your hands a fist, and one flat that goes over the fist,” Gross said. “Then you want to put one foot in between their two legs. Then push in and upward to try and remove the foreign object. The easiest thing to forget about in a real situation is getting that foot between the legs. That provides all of your force to push into the person. Without that foot, you’re not going to have the leverage to get the object out.”
Gross said he has used the Heimlich maneuver to save a choking family member.
“We were just eating Thanksgiving dinner,” he said. “I already knew the move beforehand. It happened about three years ago. They were OK and I was very thankful to know the right way to go about helping them.”
Junior Lauren Hiteshew showed how to close an open cut or wound following Stop the Bleed guidelines.
Stop the Bleed is a national awareness campaign launched in 2015 by the White House that encourages bystanders to become adept in stopping blood loss as they wait for professional medics to arrive.
Hiteshew said hearing of mass shootings in schools and other public areas provided her extra motivation to take the training.
“If you’re bleeding profusely, the first thing you want to do is apply pressure,” she said. “You can also do something called ‘packing the wound.’ You’re just going to take some roller gauze, throw it over your shoulder, and start shoving it in there. If it stops bleeding you can wrap it — but if not, we’re also teaching how to use a tourniquet.”
“This is so important to learn with all of the shootings going on lately,” Hiteshew said. “I also want to be an orthopedic surgeon so it will be something I use eventually no matter what.”
Sophomore Nathan Kline was one of many students invited on stage to take part in CPR training alongside paramedics from University Hospitals.
“This opens your eyes to what really happens when someone can’t breathe,” he said. “You have to put your right hand down in the middle of the sternum and kind of curl your left hand over it, crossing your fingers. Push up and down in a rhythm and keep your shoulders squared over the victim.”
Jonathan Delozier can be reached at 440-775-1611 or @DelozierNews on Twitter.