Acronyms That You Need To Know For Wilderness First Aid

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Wilderness first aidrefers to the first aid that is given in places that are located in places far away from a conventional medical setup. Examples of such places include mountain trails, desolate caves as well as camping areas. Due to the nature of the setup in these places, it is imperative for outdoor lovers to find ways to administer proper first aid. One of the ways to do this is to understand the acronyms that are used in this regard. Below are some of the acronyms that you must familiarize yourself with.

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ABCDEs- this is an acronym that represents what the first aider must follow when they encounter an emergency. It is part of the assessment test to ascertain if the victim’s life is threatened, and assists with providing vital signs of the same. The acronym is further expounded as:

A – Checking the patient’s airways, an integral part of wilderness first aid

B – To check whether the victim is breathing

C- Establish if the victim’s blood is circulating properly.

D- Disability, does the patient have any disability that necessitates proper handling of the head and the spinal cord?

E- Environment, does the victim’s immediate environment pose danger to them and the first aider? This assessment will also provide clues as to whether there are any imminent injuries.

The following are abbreviations that will come in handy when the need to administer wilderness first aid arises.

–          AMS

This refers to Acute Mountain Sickness, a condition which affects the human body at altitudes of above 6500′ to 8000′.

–          BEAM procedure

This makes reference to the recommended technique of moving a victim over a short distance so that medical professionals can attend to them. It means ensuring the Body Elevation Movement technique is used.


–          BSI

This abbreviation, when used in the administration of wilderness first aid means Body Substance Isolation. Typically, it involves safeguarding oneself by taking necessary precaution to prevent transmission of diseases through body fluids. It often makes use of disposable gloves, proper disposal of blood and blood products as well as discarding bodily specimen once used.


–          Use the 3C rule when heading to the site of the accident.

First Check the accident scene to ascertain your safety before proceeding to check on the victim to establish their condition.

Secondly, Call emergency services using the world wide number, 911.

Thirdly, as you await the arrival of professional medical assistance, take time to provide wilderness first aid care for the patient.


–          When is evacuation necessary in case of an accident? You will need to follow the following rules using the acronym CSM.

C is for circulation. Check whether the victim’s circulation is present at the site of injury.

S is for sensation. Establish whether the victim is in pain at different parts of the body. If the victim winces in pain, avoid touching the affected site.

M is for movement. Kick off the evacuation procedure with small movements before proceeding to more defined movements. In case you suspect head or neck injuries, halt this procedure until you are certain it is the right thing to do depending on the procedure issued in wilderness first aid.

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