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First-Aid Manual: Treat a Sprained Ankle

Add support and reduce swelling in 5 easy steps.
  • For any sprain or strain, remember RICE: rest, ice, compression, elevation. First, have the patient rest. Next, reduce the swelling by applying snow or a hydration bladder filled with cold water.
  • Compression: Wrap the ankle in a basket-weave pattern with athletic tape. First, apply an "anchor strip" around the back of the calf. Place another anchor strip under the instep of the foot.
  • Next, apply the first "stirrup strip" down the calf, over the ankle, under the foot, and back around to the top anchor strip.
  • Now apply a "horseshoe strip" under the ankle, around the heel, and back around to the bottom anchor strip.
  • Continue applying stirrup strips and horseshoe strips in an overlapping pattern until ankle is fully supported. Finally, elevate the injury above the heart.
For any sprain or strain, remember RICE: rest, ice, compression, elevation. First, have the patient rest. Next, reduce the swelling by applying snow or a hydration bladder filled with cold water.
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For any sprain or strain, remember RICE: rest, ice, compression, elevation. First, have the patient rest. Next, reduce the swelling by applying snow or a hydration bladder filled with cold water.

READERS COMMENTS

Page 1

Cooling with a hydration bladder great idea. On the med unit its fractured until proven otherwise. We always treat as fractured and splint as needed. There is NO WAY a person can tell by looking if the site is fractured or not unless of course its displaced. The old wives tale of "if u can move it its not broken" is COMPLETE BS. This said, if yer out in the bush you may have no other choice than to evaluate the injury as a sprain. Again I agree with the article wrap it, tuff it up and get going. If its fractured yer body will tell ya. After u have hiked as far as u can UNWRAP and ELIVATE and ICE/cool. Dont forget the cooling will decrease the pulse in the affected limb, if ya cant find it wait a while and try again.I wouldn't try to wrap it with heat, use cooling only.
— Medic Mark


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