Professor Paddle: Multiday Med Kit?
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Sam_Graftton
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  Quote Sam_Graftton Replybullet Topic: Multiday Med Kit?
    Posted: 08 Jul 2014 at 2:32am
What do people carry in their med kits for overnighters?

-Sam
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Jed Hawkes
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  Quote Jed Hawkes Replybullet Posted: 09 Jul 2014 at 4:03pm
I have one of those Adventure Medical kits that I supplimented with some of my own items. It's one of their mid size kits designed for 1-4 days of travel.

I Add:
-Benedryl or any kind of antihistamine.
-Real Painkillers.
-Big needle and fishing line (fixing spray skirts and basically anything else, Floss works well too).
-Additional medical tape (those things never have enough).
-A couple of bandannas (or anything else to make a sling).
-I replace the crap tweezers with proper tweezers.
-Lighter.
-some homemade firestarter (sawdust or dryer lint soaked in candle wax, you can also fold up a couple pieces of wax paper).

I make sure that these items are not touched unless it is a true emergency. In my day bag I have most of these items in a separate waterproof container. The Med kit, pin kit, a couple glove warmers and a hat all live in their own dry bag and are the last thing loaded so they are easily accessed.

I'm sure I'm missing a couple items but that's the gist of it.

Got a big trip planned?
The line will become apparent
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Fun Eli
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  Quote Fun Eli Replybullet Posted: 21 Jul 2014 at 1:40am
I have a medium sized first-aid / "Oh sh*t" kit that I put together myself. It's a great kit for a small group on mulit-day trips, but it's small and light enough (<1Kg) that I throw it in my boat for every run (and it has come in handy more than once). It's in a small watershed dry bag (prototype i-Pad case) and keeps everything 99.9% dry. I leave it open between paddling trips to let any incidental moisture evaporate, and all the contents are sealed in ziplock bags for both waterproofing and organization. It's mostly first-aid, but I also includes stuff for gear repairs and the unexpected overnight. Contents include (from top of the bag working in):

1st bag (the most urgent stuff right on top):
Gloves
Face mask
CPR face shield (disposable practice shield from CPR course, but it will keep vomit out of your mouth)
Oral airway

2nd bag (wound care):
one 5x9 Combine Dressing (for serious bleeds)
a bunch of 4x4's
Tegederm - several sizes (best thing for boaters)
2 ouchless dressings (better than gauze since they don't stick to wound)
Glacier gel dressings (best thing for blisters)
Band aids (the clear tegederm-style ones are best)
Alcohol swabs
Antibiotic ointment

3rd bag (meds - double bagged)
Ibuprofen 200mg (take 800mg for serious pain)
Benadryl (a cheap, must-have, life-saving drug)
Tylenol (best thing for lowering a fever)
Aspirin (short shelf-life, but cheap and potentially life-saving)
Imodium (potentially life saving in case of a bad case of the sh*ts or for just preventing dry-suit catastrophes)
(prescription pain killers if you have them - in case of serious injury)
(epi-pen if you have severe allergies to anything)

4th bag (bandages):
Triangular bandage (crucial for dislocated shoulder)
Ace bandage
Roller gauze

5th bag (intensive wound care):
Clorhexidine surgical scrub sponge
15ml sterile saline
Betadine solution
Sterile 10ml syringe
Sterile needle (for irrigation)
Dermabond
Steri-strips
Skin stapler 35W (can be used without anesthetic)

Other stuff tucked in around the sides:
12hr candle, lighter, & 55-gallon trash bag (emergency heat-tent)
Sam-Splint (I can't over-state how useful this is)
Duck tape (better than medical tape)
Gorilla tape (for gear repair)
Heavy needle & 135-weight thread
~12' of 3mm accessory cord
Zip-ties (spares for my homemade break-away bulkhead)

In PFD pocket:
Another 55-gallon trash bag
Spot messenger
6' 3mm cord
Flashlight
Knife

I have done emergency medicine in a number of outdoor environments, and by far the most used things in the first-aid kit are 4x4's bandaids, and duck tape. That being said, I have had to use everything on this list with the exception of the stapler, but only because the steri-stips worked well enough. You could certainly add more stuff to this list, but I find this kit covers almost every scenario in which you are not calling for a helicopter, while still being compact and light-weight. You could probably cram most of this stuff in a an Otter/Pelican box or Nalgine and wrap the sam-splint around the outside, but I think a drybag works better. I consider a sam-splint mandatory as it is super versatile and I have been in 3 situations where the sam-splint saved the day. Don't forget to pack any prescription medications people might have. If you are doing more of an expedition, I would also consider carrying several antibiotics along with a copy of "The Sanford Guide to Antimicrobial Therapy" to make sure you know which one is appropriate. And it goes without saying, but I will say it anyway, you should get good medical training so you know how to properly utilize all this stuff.

OK, that was long-winded, but I hope it helps.

-Eli
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irenen
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  Quote irenen Replybullet Posted: 21 Jul 2014 at 5:26am
Super helpful, thanks for posting!
It's all fun and games until someone loses a paddle.
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megspk
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  Quote megspk Replybullet Posted: 21 Jul 2014 at 7:37am
Great info!   
“A strong person and a waterfall always channel their own path.” -Unknown

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water wacko
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  Quote water wacko Replybullet Posted: 22 Jul 2014 at 2:23pm
Sam, I'm usually hiking when overnighting and weight plays a big part. If I can make due in the field and improvise it saves a lot. Improvise effectively. Ibuprofin, Benadryl, athletic tape, pond liner repair tape, 3 lighters in different bags, alcohol pads. Those are essential, the rest is more trip/risk specific. What hardware you (the team) bring, tarp/bivy/pad questions. Do I bring a sleeping bag or not… Small things to be assessed, but could add up to a more useful, lighter kit overall. A few times I've made a pile of the things I didn't use or could've easily gotten by without and weighed it.
"Don't ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and go do that, because what the world needs is people who have come alive." ~Howard Thurman
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