Information About Shock
We Have to Know about the Shock
- Shock is a life-threatening condition which occurs when the blood flow is so low that oxygenated blood does not reach vital organs, such as the brain and heart.
- The most common cause is severe blood loss (externally or internally) and the loss of other body fluids, such as in major burns and severe diarrhea and vomiting. Other causes are drug overdose, poisoning, a severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) and an extensive bacterial infection (septic shock).
What to look for
- The first signs are a rapid pulse, sweating and a trembling, pale, cool and clammy skin. This may be followed by a weak pulse, rapid and shallow breathing, thirst, nausea and vomiting, weakness and confusion. The eyes lackluster and seem to stare. Shock sometimes causes the person to become overly excited and anxious. The person may become unconscious. If treatment is not given, the heart will stop.
Get help immediately if:
- You suspect shock.
- Check the ABC’s: airway, breathing, circulation
- Get the person to lie down on his or her back on a blanket and elevate the feet higher than the person’s head. Keep the feet flat in all injured persons. Keep movement to an absolute minimum. If the person is vomiting or unconscious, place him in the recovery position
- Control any bleeding and splint any fractures. Be aware that there may be massive internal bleeding in the abdomen, pelvis, etc.
- Loosen tight-fitting clothing. Cover the person with a blanket or coat to keep the person warm, but don’t overheat. Do not apply any direct-source heat, such as a hot water bottle
- Do not give any fluids or something to eat. If the person is thirsty, you may moisten the lips with a bit of water
- Stay with him until help arrives and monitor and record his breathing, pulse, and consciousness every five minutes. Reassure the person. Do not ask unnecessary questions
- If the person becomes unconscious, be prepared to start CPR.