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In first aid terms Shock is an acute medical condition caused by a reduction in the bodys overall volume of blood circulation. This may be due to drop in blood presure, bleeding, poisioning, heart conditions, severe pain, severe emotional distress, etc.

Immediately after injury, there may be little evidence of shock, but it may develop with time, depending on how severe the injury is and how quickly medical services can respond.

Signs & Symptoms

* Weak, rapid pulse;
* Cold, clammy skin;
* Rapid breathing;
* Faintness/dizziness;
* Nausea;
* Pale face, fingernails, lips.

Management of Shock

2) Reassure the patient.

3) Raise the patient’s legs above the level of the heart, with head flat on the floor.
(unless fractured or a snake bite)

4) Treat any other wounds or burns, and immobilise fractures.

5) Loosen tight clothing around neck, chest and waist.

6) Maintain the patient’s body warmth with a blanket or similar.
DO NOT use any source of direct heat.

7) Give small, frequent amounts of water to the conscious patient who does not have abdominal trauma and who is unlikely to require an operation in the immediate future.

8) Monitor and record breathing, pulse and skin colour at regular intervals.

9) Place the patient in the recovery position:
* If there is difficulty breathing;
* If patient becomes unconscious;
* If patient is likely to vomit.