"Stuck in a ditch" - dealing with equine emergencies
Being called to any equine emergency can be extremely stressful. The idea of the horse being difficult to access, requiring sedation or anaesthesia in the field, the potential for human casualties and the involvement of multi-agency responders adds to the feeling of dread…. A mismanaged incident can quickly escalate becoming dangerous for both the patient and the emergency responders.
The emergency services work as a tight-knit team which can be intimidating from the outside, understanding how they work enables you to become the team member they greatly need in these circumstances. In turn, understanding their capability allows you to work with them to resolve the problem.
Your usual approach to assessment and treatment is often thwarted by a lack of access to the patient and adrenaline fighting your attempts at sedation. Understanding triage, chemical control and field anaesthesia in rescue cases empowers you to confidently manage your patient.
By understanding these aspects of rescue, you will not only survive but thrive in emergencies (and perhaps even look forward to the challenge!)
- Assessing the scene and planning with the emergency services
- Triaging the trapped patient
- The casualty centred rescue: emergency treatment and chemical control