e. Amputation. An amputation is the complete removal of tissue from the
body. It may start as an avulsion type wound with a tearing away of the tissue, but
once it is completely severed, the part is considered amputated. An amputation can
also be complete separation of a limb from the body.
TREAT OPEN SOFT TISSUE INJURIES
Anytime the skin or mucous membranes are broken, the risk of infection is
present. Also, open wounds usually result in more blood loss than do closed wounds.
Treatments of major open wounds to the body have been discussed in previous
lessons. Any open wound, however, can result in serious infection. The following are
general procedures used in managing open injuries.
a. Keep the casualty calm and quiet.
b. Preserve any amputated parts.
(1) If the avulsed part is still attached to the body, replace the part in its
bed (the wound from which it was torn) and cover the wound with a dressing. The
avulsed part may still be receiving blood through the tissue remaining attached to the
(2) If the part is no longer attached to the body (amputated), retrieve the
amputated part, wrap it in sterile gauze, and evacuate the part with the casualty to the
medical treatment facility. If possible, keep the amputated part cool, but do not freeze
wound. If the wound is a puncture wound, look for both entry and exit wounds.
d. Stabilize any protruding objects (paragraph 8-4).
e. Immobilize the injured body part to reduce pain and further injury.
TREAT A WOUND WITH A PROTRUDING (IMPALED) OBJECT
If a foreign object is impaled in a wound, do not attempt to remove the object.
Take measures to stabilize the object to prevent or reduce further injury and, at the
same time, control bleeding. In some circumstances, it may be necessary to shorten
the protruding object in order to move or evacuate the casualty.
If an object is impaled in the casualty's cheek, the protruding object may be
removed, but the casualty must be carefully monitored for bleeding into the