Pressure Immobilization Technique
Many venoms travel around the body via the lymphatic system, a system of ducts, vessels and nodes throughout the body.
This technique can be used to slow the spread of venom through the lymphatic system.
It should be used after envenomation by a sea snake, blue-ringed octopus or cone shell.
Pressure Immobilization Treatment
The following steps should be taken immediately after envenomation;
- Immediately apply pressure to the injury site
- Apply a broad bandage firmly over the site about as tight as you would for a sprained ankle - Another pressure bandage should be applied if possible, beginning at the fingers/toes and ideally extending to the armpits/groin - Elastic bandages are preferred but crepe bandages or any flexible material can do
- Apply a splint to the limb to prevent movement; Any rigid material will do
- A sling may be used to help immobilize a hand or arm
- The person must be reassured and kept still and quiet; They must not walk if at all possible
- Urgent medical aid must be sought and the bandages should not be removed until appropriate care is available and prepared
Note: Check for adequate circulation beyond the bandage. Fingers or toes should remain pink and with normal sensation and a pulse should be able to be felt beyond the bandage.
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