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Sutures!

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helicopilot
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Sutures!

Postby helicopilot » Fri Apr 24, 2015 2:10 am

Now that I likely have the attention of many...

I just had a small day surgery done and came back home with the responsibility of dressing changes for 7-10 days. After stopping at the drugstore to pick up what I thought was going to be a few days worth of supplies, it made me think of this forum. It seems like many people here have an unexplainable interest in learning how to suture and getting suture kits, but do they have the supplies to change dressings regularly? I have several, very well stocked, first responder kits but I quickly noticed that I didn't have sufficient quantities of dressings and bandages for ongoing wound care.

So, take a look at your inventory and ask yourself if you have enough of the following to cover a possible emergency then change dressings for possibly 7-10 days:

Sterile dressings
Sterile non-adherent dressings - those won't stick to the wound as it heals causing you to "rip" the scab off every time you change the dressing.
3 or 4" gauze rolls
triple-antiobiotic ointment
Tape or adhesive cover like HypaFix or MeFix
Cleaning solution (this could be as simple as making Dakin's solution : 4 cups of distilled water - or boiled water - 1/2 teaspoon baking soda and 3 Oz / 100ml of unscented bleach; keep in a glass jar away from the sun. Only mix the ingredients when needed as the solution may lose potency with time)

As a result of this situation, I've ordered some bulk supplies that I will keep in a box stored away. This isn't my first line, first response supplies, but something to draw from if I ever find myself in a position of doing ongoing wound care or post-op care.
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Denob
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Re: Sutures!

Postby Denob » Fri Apr 24, 2015 1:32 pm

Day surgery or minor surgery is a great way to learn just how much you need to keep on hand.
My wife had the same type of scenario about 2 years ago...and yes, they send you home with nothing and it's your problem.
My advice...get what you think you will need for the 1 week, 10 days, or whatever they tell you, then double that, and probably double that again!
You would be amazed at how fast this stuff goes when you have to change bandages regularly.
We used Telfa non adherant pads, standard 2 x 2 gauze, and lots (I mean LOTS) of rolls of gauze.

Also, I have mentioned the workplace sponsored first aid courses a few times...
these will teach you lots of techniques for bandaging various wounds...it may not be as easy as you think!
You will, of course, be responsible for all the workplace incidents, but the experience is great...and training is free!

If you do this for an office, then you may only see the odd paper cut, but if you work in a shop...well, you may end up being used to the sight of blood (trust me)
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helicopilot
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Re: Sutures!

Postby helicopilot » Fri Apr 24, 2015 4:50 pm

I'm thinking that the situation in a long term emergency would be worsen but he fact that:

A) injuries may be more common (use of hand tools, fatigue, more outdoor work, etc)
B) need to likely change dressings more often - I wouldn't have been able to just sit on the couch for a week, gardening, hunting, security rounds would have taken me outside and in the elements
C) lack of common hygiene where daily showers, running water and the laundry machine would increase the risk of wound infection

Having 100s of bandaids of all sizes, 2-3 tubes of Polysporin and 3-4 boxes of each sizes of sterile and non-adherent dressings should be considered your long term medical storage goal, in addition to well stocked first aid kits.
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Re: Sutures!

Postby CSG » Fri Apr 24, 2015 11:01 pm

great post. I think a lot of preppers are underprepared for the medical side of things(myself included). It is hard to find supplies in larger quantities to store. Smaller packages I find to be very expensive for what they are.

just a side note, duck tape makes for a great suture in a pinch as well as a bandaid( its not sterile though). can also be used as a sling or to hold some braces in place for a broken bone.
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helicopilot
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Re: Sutures!

Postby helicopilot » Sat Apr 25, 2015 1:32 am

I would be careful using ductape to support splints for broken bones as fractures tend to cause swelling and ductape isn't known to stretch much, as a result, you could have some issues with blood circulation being cut off.
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helicopilot
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Re: Sutures!

Postby helicopilot » Sat Apr 25, 2015 1:35 am

For cheaper prices, look at Walmart, some home medical support stores and even EBay. I'm blessed to have access to Amazon in the USA and the delivery truck is often at my door, something I will miss when I move back up North!
Last edited by helicopilot on Fri Oct 09, 2015 8:31 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Sutures!

Postby Learner » Sat Apr 25, 2015 2:17 pm

Steri strips are also a good addition to the medical kit with the dressings. Abdominal dressings are a bit thicker and are also a good addition. Most pharmacies carry these also.
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Jensen
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Re: Sutures!

Postby Jensen » Sat Apr 25, 2015 5:21 pm

Great advice helicopilot. I am well stocked for my family in this area. Which is more down to luck than real good planning. But I ended up being able to buy bulk quantities and needing to have them on hand. In the same area I would recommend disposable needles in various sizes. Drove around to four different pharmacies to buy enough of these without raising suspicion (they probable thought I was a drug addict anyway...). Gloves and face masks are also great to help minimize the risk of infection when redressing wounds etc. Various medical examination equipment and nurse/doctor equipment again purchased as we could easily buy it and had little need to purchase anything else at the time. I am as guilty as everyone else in neglecting medical preps although I am well supplied I would like to add more to the pile but shiny things always gets in the way... :)
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Re: Sutures!

Postby Goldie » Sun Apr 26, 2015 12:52 am

Just a note .. some bandages with STICKY sides loose their stick . The worst is ELASTOPLAST cloth brand type.
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Re: Sutures!

Postby scrounger » Sun Apr 26, 2015 4:15 pm

I think we have all heard the advise on keeping some feminine supplies in your kit for control of bleeding. On the the surface it seems logical. After reading this article http://preparednessadvice.com/medical/s ... Tz_P_BN99l I'm not so sure.
Thoughts?
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