Maintain the patient's airway.
Evaluate and treat any burns. Cool burn sites and apply moist, sterile
Treat the patient for shock and administer oxygen.
Monitor the patient's cardiac status.
Force the patient to lie down and keep quiet. Maintain his body
Give IV fluids.
(10) Transport the patient immediately.
Perform a urinary catheterization. Tissue death may cause the urine to be
cherry-red to black colored.
a. General. Lightning is a form of electricity, atmospheric electricity. The
patient's body does not hold an electrical charge from the lightning; therefore, it is safe
to touch him in order to treat him. Generally, the longer an individual is in contact with
the lightning, the more serious his injuries. Always assume that a victim of a lightning
strike has sustained multiple injuries, including spinal cord injuries.
b. Body Injuries. Electric current can cause these problems:
(1) Nervous system. The patient may be unconscious initially. Or, he may
suffer partial paralysis or respiratory paralysis.
Fixed and dilated pupils are a normal reaction and not necessarily a poor
(2) Sensory system. Loss of sight, hearing, or speech, tympanic rupture
may occur causing a small amount of blood to drain from the ears.
(3) Skin. Causes a burn that typically is mottled, feathery, or patchy. It
appears in a scattered pattern over the skin and looks like tiny flowers.
(4) Heart. Cardiac damage is common. Most serious injury occurs when
the current crosses the heart. The current can disrupt the heart's rhythm or cause the
coronary arteries to go into spasm.