Showing posts with label first-aid. Show all posts
Showing posts with label first-aid. Show all posts

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Mass Casualty Incidents and Triage

By: Sebastian Berry

Friends of Family Survival Farm: It is with a heavy heart and after much pondering that I make this posting. I make a pretty good effort to make my posts timely and relevant. Like posting about fireworks and burns around the 4th of July. I feel this one will be more difficult due to the tender nature of recent events in Las Vegas.

On October 1, 2017 a man opened fire on unsuspecting concert goers in an adjacent location across the road from the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino. He killed at least 58 and injured almost another 500. Fox News Timeline of Events. I have neither the inclination to mention the shooters name or to delve into a second amendment argument. This act was senseless and seemingly unprovoked and the loss of life saddens me deeply.

DISCLAIMER: Instructions and information here is not a substitute for professional medical care and treatment. If you are having an emergency call 911 or your local emergency number for assistance.

I do not claim credit to any of the images used unless specifically indicated. All rights and credits remain with the original owners

Let me be very clear from the start, people die. This is an unfortunate fact of life. All of us have or will lose people that we love, care for, or are close to. Sometimes, bad things happen to very good people. Many times there is just simply nothing we can do about it.

Good people died in Las Vegas last Sunday. Other good people did all they could to save them. It is not a very difficult Google search to find the stories of heroism that took place. People covering people to shield them from fire. We've all heard the story of the man that commandeered a truck to take people to the hospital. And then there's this...

Mass Casualty Incidents or MCI, overwhelm medical systems and emergency responders. I work at a hospital under a company called HCA. The company CEO, Milton Johnson, sent an email to all employees about the shooting. Here's a little glimpse.
"...As the horrific details of the Route 91 shooting in Las Vegas became evident, we also learned of the incredible impact it had on our colleagues at Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center and its sister hospitals, Southern Hills Hospital and Mountain View Hospital.  Even though our hospitals regularly plan for mass casualties, no one could have anticipated the magnitude of this tragic event. 
As the closest trauma center to the concert site, Sunrise immediately started receiving patients that arrived by all modes of transportation.  Ultimately, they would care for approximately two hundred victims.  For the entirety of the event, one hundred twenty patients with gunshot wounds received care.  All 30 operating rooms were immediately activated and operated throughout the night and following day.  In all, more than 80 operations were performed..."
People and equipment from those sister hospitals was transferred to help effect the care of the injured. It is no small feat to go from normal operations to bursting at the seams and still handling more.

Dr. James Sebesta is a retired Army Colonel and surgeon who was in attendance at the concert.

 He recalls in a newspaper interview with The Seattle Times:
...He recalls one man, assisted by his son, who had a bullet wound in his back. He helped to carry the man off the field but doesn’t know if he survived.
Another woman he came upon was grievously wounded, and he knew she could not be saved. So he moved on.
“We went from person to person trying to get the people who were still alive out of there, and then went back after that and got some of the people who had expired, “ Sebesta recalled.
Eventually, he reunited with his wife, Janelle, at their hotel after 3 a.m. Monday. He could not sleep as his wife’s phone kept “blowing up” with messages from family and friends.
“I’ve been in the Army a long time. I’ve been to war four or five times … I’ve been in a lot of bad places during my career and seen lots of mass cal (casualty) things. But in the Army, we were ready for ’em. And the other thing is, there was a reason for it — I mean, it was war,”...
Herein lies the hard part of MCI and triage. We must determine quickly those who our help can help the most. We must make a decision on the fly if people stand a reasonable chance of being saved. In one of my previous articles on first aid (you can read it here) I wrote:
"There are two questions a person must ask themselves before rendering aid...
    1. Do I have the skills to render proper aid?
    2. Do I have the equipment to render proper aid?
If either question is answered no, then you must seriously reconsider rendering aid."
In MCI's this traditional thinking goes out the window. In MCI's if you have hands and are able to function you can be put to work. Like Colonel Sebesta recalled in being able to get people out of the danger area and to treatment. YOU might be the one to have to move people or to put your fingers into the bleeding hole in order to stop the bleeding. In another article I wrote about tourniquets (here), that might be the only thing that keeps a person from bleeding to death and you might be the only person available to apply one.

Triage, typically, functions with the following labels for groups.

  • GREEN: Uninjured or very lightly injured (think band-aids and bruises)
    • These are the people that can be put to work.
  • YELLOW: Walking wounded or folks to be considered for URGENT care.
    • These people typically are able to follow simple one step commands and need assistance in moving.
  • RED: These are your gunshot wounds, stab wounds, or long bone fractures like the legs or upper arms. URGENT SURGICAL.
    • These injuries require immediate and possibly life saving interventions.
  • BLACK: Also known as EXPECTANT or dead or actively dying.
    • These are people who are not breathing or responsive on initial encounter, the airway is opened and if they do not breathe spontaneously are to be considered dead and no further aid rendered.
    • Extensive burns, especially those that involve the respiratory tract.
    • Obvious wounds not compatible with life, like open skull fractures with visible gray matter.
In the world that we live in now. Anyone might be called on to perform triage. Like I have told my friends and family- Head on a swivel. As our government has told us- If you see something, say something. It only takes a moment for our world to change.

We must be prepared. Do you have specific plans for MCI? Talk to us in the comments. Please don't forget to check out our giveaway section here.

Friday, September 29, 2017

New Guidelines for Safe Usage of Colloidal Silver

Story at-a-glance
·         There are three distinctly different types of silver products on the market that are all labeled and sold as "colloidal" silver: ionic silver, silver protein, and true colloidal silver. While ionic silver and silver protein are the most prevalent in the market, they contain very little or no colloidal silver and can do more harm than good.
·         Colloidal silver has been known as a remarkably effective natural antibiotic for centuries. But in past several decades, research has shown colloidal silver can eradicate antibiotic-resistant microbes like MRSA, the Avian Influenza (bird flu), and Human Corona virus (SARS).
·         Since there are health risks involved if you select the wrong formula, it is recommended you use colloidal silver only under the guidance and supervision of a qualified alternative health practitioner, who can help you select a high-quality product.

The Silver Safety Committee has announced its creation of the Silver Safety Pyramid, which is designed to enable anyone to easily determine safe usage levels of any dietary supplement containing silver, typically referred to as ionic silver or colloidal silver.
The Silver Safety Committee consists of doctors, chemistry professors and world leaders in health-freedom advocacy.
According to Herbert Slavin, M.D., director of the Institute of Advanced Medicine in Lauderhill, Florida, and a member of the Committee:
"This is an area where confusion and concern developed needlessly. Few things in life are as cut-and-dried as the fact that silver is completely safe when used within normal limits. The U.S. government provides a very clear guideline for the safe oral intake of silver. We've simply provided an easy method for applying that guideline to the safe use of any silver supplement product."
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has a guideline called the Reference Dose (RfD) for safe limits on daily intake of silver. The EPA's RfD guideline is specifically intended to keep a person's intake of silver below the level that could possibly discolor the skin.
Says Jeffrey Blumer, M.D., Ph.D., director of the Center for Drug Research, the world's largest clinical research center for pediatric drugs, and former director of the Greater Cleveland Poison Control Center:
"Common substances like table salt and aspirin are harmless with normal use, but excessive intake can become toxic and even life-threatening. With normal responsible usage, silver supplements are entirely harmless to humans."
The Silver Safety Pyramid is based on the Committee's Silver Safety Guideline, which recommends that a person's intake of silver from dietary supplements be limited to 25 percent of the EPA's recommended limit for total daily intake of silver.
It utilizes the Silver Safety Calculation, a simple mathematical formula that enables a person to easily determine how much to take of any silver-containing product to remain within the safety guidelines.
The EPA RfD guideline is expressed in terms of micrograms of silver. Virtually all silver supplements, on the other hand, are labeled in terms of parts per million (ppm), which is the concentration of silver in the water, not micrograms. With the Silver Safety Calculation, you just plug in your pounds of body weight and the ppm of silver in whatever silver supplement you're using, and it calculates the appropriate limits for you.
The Silver Safety Calculation is simple enough: 12 times pounds divided by ppm equals drops per day.
The Silver Safety Pyramid provides guidelines for determining safe usage limits from three perspectives:
·         Daily use
·         Short-term use
·         Entire lifetime
"This is useful information for everyone interested in using silver for health," Dr. Baird added. "If people follow these guidelines, they can use silver supplements while remaining fully confident they are not exposing themselves to any risks whatsoever."
The Committee's website includes the Silver Safety Auto-Calculator, which automatically performs the math in the Silver Safety Pyramid for you. The site also has an Education & FAQ section, which helps clarify the meanings of terms like ppm, ionic silver, colloidal silver, and more.
The website is

Dr. Mercola's Comments:
There are several types of silver products on the market. Some are healthy alternatives to antibiotics while others can be downright dangerous to your health.
Three Types of 'Colloidal' Silver – The Good, the Bad, the Ugly
According to a Commercial Product Report by,1 a site that provides detailed laboratory analyses of colloidal silver products, there are three distinctly different types of silver products on the market that are all labeled and sold as "colloidal" silver:
  1. Ionic silver
  2. Silver protein
  3. True colloidal silver2
This misrepresentation of colloidal silver by less scrupulous manufacturers has no doubt led to some of the more negative connotations to colloidal silver. When purchasing colloidal silver, it's very important to make sure you're getting true colloidal silver, because, as you will see, the other two varieties of silver may do far more harm than good.
Since there are health risks involved if you select the wrong formula, I recommend you use colloidal silver only under the guidance and supervision of a qualified alternative health practitioner, who can help you select a high-quality product.
Ionic silver solutions – Silver solutions are typically clear like water or have a slight yellow tint. The producers of ionicsilver solutions will tell you that colloidal silver should look like clear water, but this is incorrect, so don't be fooled. The term colloidal means particles, not ions.
To determine whether a solution is ionic silver, add regular table salt (sodium chloride) to it. If silver ions are present, then the chloride ions will combine with the silver ions and create a white, cloudy appearance. For more detailed instructions on how to do this, please see the Silver Colloids website.
Ionic silver is not entirely without merit, but since ionic silver products contain such a low percentage of silver particles, these products will not be as effective as true colloidal silver, which has a much greater particle surface area3 relative to the total silver content.
Ionic silver is still a strong anti-microbial, and can be effectively used in situations where chloride is NOT present. When chloride is present – such as inside your body – then what little silver particle is present in the solution will survive to produce benefit, but again, not nearly as effectively as a true colloidal solution.
Please be aware that most all "colloidal silver" generators sold for home use produce ionic silver solutions, and not true colloidal silver.
Potential Danger – Low. If you take ionic silver products according to the manufacturer's recommended dosage, ionic silver will not cause argyria, a condition that causes your skin to turn blue-gray.
Silver protein – Silver protein products are the second most prevalent type of so-called colloidal silver products on the market. These products are a combination of metallic silver particles and a protein binder to keep the particles in suspension. One tip-off that it's a silver protein product is if it claims to have high concentrations of colloidal silver (typically in the range of 30 to 20,000 ppm).
Of the three types of colloidal silver, silver protein products have the lowest particle surface area for a given silver concentration, making the silver inaccessible for safe and effective absorption by your body. Because of this, you want to avoid all silver protein products.
To find out whether you have a silver protein product rather than a true silver colloid, look for these characteristics:
  • Foaming: When shaken, a silver protein product produces foam above the liquid that will persist for minutes after being shaken. This is probably the single most reliable indicator.
  • Concentration: Silver protein products tend to have very high concentration values, typically in the range of 30 to 20,000 ppm.
  • Color: The color ranges from light amber to almost black with an increasing concentration of silver.
Potential Danger – High. Due to the high concentration of large silver particles, silver protein products are known to cause argyria, which turns your skin blue-gray color.
True colloidal silver – True colloidal silver products are the least prevalent type of colloidal silver on the market due to the high cost of production. In true colloidal silver, the majority of the silver content is in the form of silver particles. True colloids will typically contain between 50 and 80 percent particles, while the balance will be silver ions.
Because of the high concentration of silver particles, true silver colloids are never clear like water. True colloidal silver with a sufficient concentration of particles does not look like water because silver particles – even very small particles – block light from passing through, making the liquid appear darker.
Potential Danger – None. Due to the very low concentration of ionic silver and small particle size, true silver colloids do not cause argyria.
What Is Colloidal Silver Useful For?
Colloidal silver has been known as a remarkably effective natural antibiotic for centuries. But in past several decades, research has shown colloidal silver can even eradicate antibiotic-resistant microbes like MRSA,4 the Avian Influenza (bird flu), and Human Corona virus (SARS).
In the mid-1970s, Dr. Robert O. Becker at Syracuse Medical University began his groundbreaking research into colloidal silver. He later concluded:
"What we have done was rediscover the fact that silver kills bacteria, a fact which had actually been known for centuries… All of the organisms we tested were sensitive to the electrically generated silver ion, including some that were resistant to all known antibiotics… In no case were any undesirable side effects of the silver treatment apparent."
However, silver's innate anti-microbial effect was actually common knowledge among doctors some 60 years before Becker's time. In fact, in the early 1900s, Alfred Searle, founder of the global Searle Pharmaceutical Company, had already discovered that silver in its liquid colloidal form could kill even the most deadly of pathogens. In his book Colloids in Biology and Medicine, 1919, Searle wrote:
"Applying colloidal silver to human subjects has been done in a large number of cases with astonishingly successful results… it has the advantage of being rapidly fatal to microbes without toxic action on its host. It is quite stable. It protects rabbits from ten times the lethal dose of tetanus or diphtheria toxin."
Unlike prescription antibiotic drugs, silver does not create resistance or immunity in pathogens killed by it.
Recent Research Espousing the Virtues of Colloidal Silver
Over the past few years, several new studies have demonstrated the fact that silver is one of the most effective agents in the battle against MRSA and other deadly antibiotic-resistant super pathogens, including the:
  1. Brigham-Young Clinical Study – This study, published in the journal Current Science in 2006,5 found that a number of the antibiotic drugs which had previously been able to kill MDR (multiple drug-resistant) pathogens, such as MRSA, could be restored to full efficacy against the deadly pathogens, but only if a liquid silver solution similar to colloidal silver was used in conjunction with the drug.
  2. Iranian Clinical Study – This study6 also found that silver increases the effectiveness of antibiotic drugs against staph infections. The researchers concluded:
"The antibacterial activities of penicillin G, amoxicillin, erythromycin, clindamycin, and vancomycin were increased in the presence of silver nano-particles (Ag-NPs) against both test strains. The highest enhancing effects were observed for vancomycin, amoxicillin, and penicillin G against S. aureus."
  1. Taiwanese Clinical Study – Published in the journal Colloids Surface B Biointerfaces7 in 2007, this study demonstrated that colloidal silver, by itself, eradicates both MRSA and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, another deadly and extremely opportunistic superbug.
  2. Czech Clinical Study – Likewise, this Czech study published in the prestigious Journal of Physical Chemistry B8 in 2006, also demonstrated that colloidal silver was a highly effective agent against MRSA:
"…silver particles with a narrow size distribution with an average size of 25 nm, which showed high antimicrobial and bactericidal activity against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, including highly multi-resistant strains such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). The study further demonstrated that very low concentrations of silver could be utilized to destroy MRSA, as long as the silver particles were very small, averaging 25 nm."

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Surviving MacGyver Style: Duct Tape Survival Tips

By Karen Roguski

MacGyver, televised from 1985 - 1992, gave millions a sneak peek of using unconventional items in an entirely different manner than they were intended. Almost every episode showcased MacGyver in a survival necessary situation that he was able to escape, survive, and thrive.

One product that was highlighted numerous time and in hundreds of ways was duct tape. Here is our very own MacGyver style list of ways to help survivors with the use of the fix-all duct tape.

Twenty-Three Survival Uses For Duct Tape

Originally invented in 1942, for military waterproofing, “duck tape” has inspired many a person in the art of quick fixing. Later the name was changed to duct tape, but the many practical uses remained the same.  

Blister Protection

Reduce the friction of blisters, especially on the feet, by covering the blister with moleskin and duct tape.

Clothing Repair

A quick way in which to patch a snag or hole in garments is to make a patch out of duct tape.

Off- Ground Sleeping

To avoid bugs, water, or any other potential ground issues a quick solution could be an inexpensive hammock.

Location Marker

Wishing to mark the trail back to home or camp is easy with the use of duct tape as it easily adheres to almost any source.

Tent Fix

To prevent bugs, water, or other issues from bothering you or your belongings no matter the material duct tape is one of the best ways to go in a pinch. For best results place tape on both sides of the hole.

Hang A Light

In the event of electrical power failure, one can attach a flashlight to the wall to allow a better light cast throughout the space.

Bandage Wrap

Duct tape bandage wrap can be used for keeping the dressing dry, wrapping a sprain, covering stitches, or so many more medical means.

Drying Clothes

Clothesline made out of duct tape can be done by twisting or braiding until strong. This same technique can be used to create rope, belts, or even means to hang supplies.

Animal Treatment

Just like with humans, animals are often in need of medical or support like means of attention. Duct tape can be used for hundreds of various animal needs.

Tiki Torch

Wrapping duct tape on the end of a large stick and setting the duct tape on fire is a great means of extra light.

Mending Patch

Duct tape is an awesome way in which to patch a leaking hose, duct work, or virtually any object in need of a temporary patch.

Spear Creation

Need a tool, weapon, or food hunting source make a quick and easy spear.

Injury Sling

The following images show just how simplistically making a sling out of duct tape can be created.

Frostbite Prevention

By placing duct tape directly on exposed areas of skin in cold, windy, and snowy conditions can help prevent frostbite and help with overall warmth.

Arrow Fletching

Duct tape can make arrow fletching quickly and easily. One will be easily surprised at how far your arrow can fly.

Weather Preparation

Sealing cracks, stopping air leaks, or even hanging plastic over windows is a perfect use for duct tape.

Sprain Support

Keep a sprain or potential break from getting worse by wrapping the area with duct tape. You can even add sticks, bark, or other items to help support the area in question.


The use of bright or fluorescent duct tape can help save a life or allow help to find you much easier. Create a giant S.O.S. or a large arrow to guide rescuers or help in your direction.


Nothing is worse than having to walk about with wet socks. To remedy this add or cover shoe or the hole with duct tape.

Restrain Someone

Strong means in which to bind someone’s hands and feet until you come up with a plan or means to contact authorities.

Stop Leak

Fix a leaking water bottle, Camelbak, bowl, or any other container by placing duct tape over the hole or crack.

Butterfly Stitches

First aid in a pinch is a must when off the grid. The use of duct tape can help seal, cover, or protect a wound.

Bug Catch

Fly or flying bug catcher use duct tape to make flypaper. Hang duct tape from the ceiling, the inside of the tent, or anywhere around the camp site.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Family Survival First Aid Kit (Part 2)

By: Sebastian Berry

Here at Family Survival Farm, in my little slice of paradise, I have been given a very wide berth when it comes to what topics I present and how I write them. As I and others have written our total view count continues to climb and the view count on the posts I have written continues to climb. I want to thank you, our/my readers. Sincerely, I believe that we have a good thing growing here (pun intended) at Family Survival Farm and you, the reader are a very important part of that. I can only hope that you continue to like and share our content here with your family and friends.

And now, for the rest of the story...beginning with my standard disclaimers.

DISCLAIMER: Instructions and information here is not a substitute for professional medical care and treatment. If you are having an emergency call 911 or your local emergency number for assistance.

I do not claim credit to any of the images used unless specifically indicated. All rights and credits remain with the original owners.

In my last post, Part 1, we discussed the following:
  • The first-aid mindset
  • Making your kit fit your specific needs
  • The container
  • General supplies
I promised in part 1 that I would show you my kit and its contents. It worked out really well because I just came back from a 10 day vacation with the family and it needed reorganized desperately. Some photos do contain duplicates, I'm not the best photographer, sorry.

Credit: Sebastian Berry

Credit: Sebastian Berry
I'm sure some of you didn't believe that I actually used a tackle box for my family survival first-aid kit. I have a couple of different reasons behind using something like this.
  1. It's hard plastic-my kids beat the crap out of this thing and its held up well.
  2. Lots of organizing slots
  3. Space in the bottom for large/odd shaped things
In part 1 I wrote about the purpose of your family first-aid kit and some of the things your kit should help you take care of.
  • Cuts and scrapes
  • Aches and pains
  • Bug bites
  • Splinters and slivers
Below are individual shots of the contents of my kit. I want to note that you will see several different kinds of band-aids, including Band-Aid brand. Personally, I am partial to no brand in particular. 

In the brown bottle is a product called new skin. It is a polish type covering for very small cuts and scrapes. It burns like hell to put on but I like it for tricky spots to put a band-aid, like a finger tip. The clear bottle is hydrogen peroxide, my kids peeled the label off of it. You will also see moleskin, steri-strips and chloraprep.

Credit: Sebastian Berry
Credit: Sebastian Berry
Foot and general wound care items. Having served in the Army, I know what it is to have bad feet. I have seen some bad feet in my time. Foot care is definitely one of those things where the ounce of prevention is worth the pound of cure. There is almost nothing more miserable than having to carry on with injured feet. When your feet are your main mode of transport, you have to take care of them. The items above can be used to care for feet before, during, or after.

Like was mentioned in part 1, your first-aid kit should not be a replacement for your medicine cabinet. Keep enough items that you specifically prepare for. In my family, my wife and I both suffer from sinus issues, the kids get canker sores in the mouth, and I specifically have several fillings in precarious places. This is the part where you can really think about your specific situation. You have to think about some things that might happen before they happen.

Credit: Sebastian Berry
Here are some things that I think people forget about. Three things stand out to me here.
  • Cutting tools in the razor knife and scissors
  • Nail clippers
  • Small treats
Credit: Sebastian Berry
We can all think of reasons why cutting tools and clippers are good ideas. I don't think I really need to expound further. I keep only a couple of small treats in the family first-aid box-again for obvious reasons. However, there is almost nothing better in this world to take away the ouchies in both kids and us bigger kids than a little bit of chocolate..

You may notice some things not included in mine-like tweezers or a needle. That's because on our most recent survival family adventure my kids lost those items. I typically keep a sewing kit and tweezers together in the very bottom. 

A couple of other things not shown are cough drops and iodine. Keep in mind that if you keep cough drops in your kit you have to keep them in a sealed bag so that your kit does not take on the smell and flavor of your preferred cough drop. I love iodine. Yes, the brown stuff that your grandma poured all over your cuts and scrapes. My bottle leaked and luckily it did not get everywhere. That is also something that needs to be stored in a sealed bag or two.

Credit: Sebastian Berry
 I wanted to take this picture to show just how much you can fit into a kit. This is not terribly heavy or bulky. My kids, other than the baby, are able to carry and open this on their own.

Credit: Sebastian Berry
Yes, it all fits. The lid closes and when you are done you can place your cold beverage of choice in the cup holders on the top. 

What do you put in your family survival first-aid kit? What different things or things that you think are specific for your family do you include? Tell us all in the comments...