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When you find yourself without easy access to professional medical help, the ability to fashion crude but effective fixes to health emergencies — like broken legs — can mean the difference between life and death. Depending on what materials you have available, anything from tree branches to trekking poles to the frame of your backpack will work as splinting material.

Difficulty:
Moderate

Instructions

things you’ll need:

    Two rigid supports
    Padding such as a blanket, pillow, or sleeping bag
    Rope, cord, or tape

    1

    Lay your padding material flat on the ground. Fold it in such a way that you have a rectangle, as long as possible on one side, with the other side as long as your two rigid pieces.

    2

    Place both pieces of rigid material at either end of the rectangular piece of fabric and begin to roll the rigid pieces in the fabric, working your way towards the center. Leave eight or ten inches of fabric unrolled in the very center.

    3

    Place the unrolled fabric behind the broken portion of the leg and the two rolled up rigid pieces on either side of the leg. Tie the makeshift splint in place with the rope or cord, taking care to tie it tight enough that the splint won’t shift around: But do not tie it so tight that circulation is cut off. Tie in as many places as possible, but do not tie where the break is, rather tie on either side of it.

    4

    Apply the padding material directly to the leg, if the material itself provides rigidity; like a foam sleeping pad for instance.

On August - 21 - 2012

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