BCD Bits and Bobs

DocSTAB wrote:
As for the FFD/BCD issue, what good is there in putting a second dressing on the first? The old school three dressings rule is utter bollox, same with this two dressing BS. You've only got so much claret in you. If ering if there was any one more qualified than men that could put the argumeeach FFD holds a pint and you lob on another to fill up before putting on a tourniquet, then all you've succeeded in doing is holding two pints of blood strapped to the casualties leg/arm etc, where it's f all use. Two pints is over a litre which is between 15-20% of the casualties blood volume. If it's a big bleed then put a tourniquet straight on, people are too scared of using them. Around 60% of preventable combat deaths are due to uncontrolled extremity bleeds. Get a tourniqeut on and get them out of there.
[My Bold]

I took this off the QM's thread about webbing and there were a few comments along these lines ( I'm not picking on you DocSTAB, yours was the first one I came across when quoting!).

Extremity bleeds are a big problem, but I was told that almost 90% of wounds occur on the extremities. I know the risks of putting on a tourniquet, I'm just not sure that Joe Public does.

I've heard a lot of different stories about how the new type FFD's work, and how much blood they can hold, and I was wandering if any one could put this argument to rest?


Well obviously the BCD's are 'the rules' as far as what the army wants you to do, but some common sense can be applied.

Extremity bleeds are responsible for around 60% of all preventable combat deaths (data from US/UK forces in Iraq/Afghanistan), which is mainly a consequence of better body armour.

If you think about it, if blood is soaking through an FFD then the bleed is not controlled. Putting another FFD on top may apply more pressure and successfully stop the bleed, but it may just as easily fail to do so. The first you'll know of this failure is when you see blood soaking through the second FFD. By then at least two pints of blood have already left the body.

The new FFDs are much better and make applying sufficient pressure much easier. They can also be used as a windlass to further increase the pressure. I would imagine that they hold less blood that the old FFDs, but that's no bad thing really, as the dressing is applied to stop bleeding, not to hold blood.

Really, if there is a large arterial bleed, then you should apply a torniquet. You will know straight away if the bleed is controlled or not and you can go on to dress the wound with an FFD after. With the inclusion of the new FFDs, the CAT torniquet, haemostatic agents like Quikclot and Haemcon and the new evidence coming from studies in Iraq/Afghan, the Army ought to revise the BCDs to reflect a more evidence-based approach to battlefield care.
Joe public shouts for a first aider, who puts on a bandage from the first aid kit, and if its serious rings 999 and waits 7 minutes for an ambulance. Its a fairly simple drill really. (Read the Chelsea v Reading post match report for an example of the drill.)
DocSTAB said:
They can also be used as a windlass to further increase the pressure.
Alas is not the case as some nugget had the retainer bar removed from the brit issue one as squaddies are seen as too dim to know how to use it!
I know they are binning the clip on the top of the pad (so they'll all unroll the wrong way), are they sh!t-canning the little clip at the end of the bandage??

Why?? That's even more stupid! How are you meant to secure it then?

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