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Old 11-08-2008, 17:09   #1
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Medical Kit Recommendation

i'm looking for advice on what's the best medical kit for extended offshore crusing. i'd like to buy a fully made up kit rather than start one from scratch but obviously can add specific items if needed or recommended.

any thoughts?

couldn't find anything much on the google search of the forum but if it's been asked before - and answered - could someone point me in the right direction

thanks
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Old 11-08-2008, 18:04   #2
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I'd check w your local Paramedics. Most will be glad to show you a real kit. You wouldn't need e-tubes or IV sets but the cravats, ice packs, bandages, trauma dressing, etc may all come in handy. Of course a good basic first aid course would be appropriate. Any meds you or companions might need, epi pens etc. would be vital.
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Old 11-08-2008, 18:10   #3
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boomp: unfortunately, here in Azerbaijan, checking with my local paramedic isn't much of an option
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Old 11-08-2008, 21:51   #4
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Hers a link to Landfall Navigation Adventure Medical Kits They have various kits that you can select depending on your needs.

Mike
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Old 11-08-2008, 22:10   #5
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Bob,



I went to an Orange Coast Collage (sailing academy) for a 2 day medical seminar. The doctor there gave out a list for a kit that he said would work for a San Francisco to Hawaii crossing. It ALL fit in an empty large Peanut butter jar! I have seen other cruisers out here now with kits that take up a LOT of room. Some even have bone saws in them. I don't know about you, but I am not going to use a bone saw any time soon!

My point is, don't get to carried away. Get a small kit, add any stuff you “know” you will need and then pick up stuff as you go. Here in Mexico, drugs are about half the cost of the USA. So restocking the kit for stuff that goes out of date is not a hardship $$ wise. If we had known that before we headed out, we would not have stocked up so much before hand.


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Old 12-08-2008, 09:05   #6
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PassageMaker University Solomons, MD: September 23, 2008
September 24, 2008

Including:

Medical Preparedness For Cruisers ~ by Dr. Michael Jacobs

Join Dr. Michael Jacobs for two days of comprehensive medical awareness, prevention, treatment, and health maintenance that will prepare you (and your medicine cabinets) for safer cruising. This two day course is a combination of lecture and practical application in the classroom.

PassageMaker University Solomons, MD Seminar Schedule - PassageMaker Magazine Event Series
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Old 28-09-2010, 07:15   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobsadler View Post
boomp: unfortunately, here in Azerbaijan, checking with my local paramedic isn't much of an option
I can be your "local" Paramedic on the forum... Or travel to Sarasota County Florida and I can actually punch holes in your veins and flush chemicals into you!

As to a kit, it really boils down to your training level. There are some real good books on emergency medical procedures for mariners. Complete laymen have sutured and set fractures. The above notwithstanding, if you really want to have a good kit, go find an EMT Basic course at the minimum... Which as EMS training goes is VERY basic.

Probably the single largest threat to survival in a trauma situation is shock. Recognizing and treating it are paramount to patient survival. Anaphylactic shock is included as a true emergency, but has different treatment.

The long and short of it is all the medical equipment in the world is of little use if you do not posses the knowledge necessary to use it!

AS A MINIMUM KIT I would have:
BSI (gloves, face shield with mask, goggles or splash glasses etc)
CPR mouth to mouth barrier
Trauma Scissors
Wire splints
Betadyne
Hydrogen peroxide
Roll gauze
4x4 gauze
Trauma dressings
Compression bandage or Ace bandage
Neosporin
Bandaids
Hot & Cold packs
Dyphenhydramine (benedryl) tablets
Ibuprofen
Gentomyacin eye solution (boric acid in a pinch)
Pepto Bismol
Gatorade powder (or any sports drink w/ electrolytes)


Dental anesthetic
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Old 28-09-2010, 08:28   #8
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Bob the original poster 2 years ago in Azerbaijan is probably startled this thread has had a Tripple By-Pass!

My advice is to go as FAR from water as possible and to go into a large pharmacy and get a the biggest family or Industrial first aid kit.

The Circumnavigator 168 piece kit in one mag I have is USD$127.20

My kit is 170 pieces and cost.... USD$20.00

Johnson & Johnson First Aid Kit 170 Pieces

from $18.89

But what is probably more important is the first aid certificate because that gives you the knowledge to know what is useful in a kit and not.

I did a Remote Area first aid course designed for people working in the outback where help is not available for at least 24 hours.
It was good enough to tell me that 3/4 of the overpriced stuff in the circumnavigators box can be imporvised by 'normal' first aid kits.

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Old 28-09-2010, 08:49   #9
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Here's a few links:

http://thescubasportsclub.org/diveIn...dicine_kit.pdf

Adventure Medical Kits - Marine First Aid Kit - USCG Approved - Marine Adventure Medical Kit

Marine Medical Systems - Specializing in Medical Supplies for Boats

To me, the size and complexity of your medical kit depends to a large extent on your cruising style. If you're going coastal or inland waters and plan to tie to the dock or anchor offshore of a populated area, then your requirements are going to be significantly different than someone going offshore for extended periods, anchoring in third- or fourth-world nations, or in areas where emergency transportation is not an option.

The other factor I'd consider is the health and health requirements of those onboard.
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Old 28-09-2010, 09:00   #10
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As a professional Captain we are required to carry certain items. I have found a company that covers all that is needed and more. They have many different types depending on your needs. Go to the following site and check them out.

Ocean Medical International -Medical Kits for Yachts & Medical Training for Crews


Or call Becky Castellano st (954)767-1046

She is very helpful and get you exactly what it is you will need !
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Old 28-09-2010, 09:01   #11
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Quote:
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The other factor I'd consider is the health and health requirements of those onboard.
Very good point.
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Old 28-09-2010, 14:28   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Delezynski View Post
Bob,


I went to an Orange Coast Collage (sailing academy) for a 2 day medical seminar. The doctor there gave out a list for a kit that he said would work for a San Francisco to Hawaii crossing. It ALL fit in an empty large Peanut butter jar! I have seen other cruisers out here now with kits that take up a LOT of room. Some even have bone saws in them. I don't know about you, but I am not going to use a bone saw any time soon!

Greg
Needed one (not for a crew member), had one, carry one with me....

And the doctor was playing the odds. What works on a very well traveled route with lots of help available (the eastern Pacific is the US Military's training area, and when you call we come), plus commercial ships, etc. Can you make do with what fits in a peanut butter jar? Probably. But then you'll probably do just fine with a box of band-aids, 90% of the time. Of course, the weather will be just fine 90% of the time too.

What happens when you hit that other 10%?

Even something as ubiquitous as appendicitis can be usually managed without surgery. In fact, we often will buff a patient up with potent antibiotics and fluids, and wait for the surgeons to sober wake up to fix it. Thats assuming that the appendix doesn't perforate, the odds (again) suggest that most of the time it won't and a well prepped patient is a better surgical candidate. And in hospital if the worst happens and it does rupture, well the treatment will just include a longer surgery and hospital stay, with lots more antibiotics.

At sea? Good luck. But, I guess having a well stocked peanut butter jar is better than most folks have, and kudos for being proactive enough to get the training!
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Old 28-09-2010, 14:29   #13
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Store-bought "first aid" kits usually translate into "inconvenience kits" full of aspirin and odd-shaped bandaids, with little if any contents aimed at TRAUMA and injury that must be dealt with differently.

A couple of years ago I had a little accident while cooking and discovered that I really wanted Silvadene cream for burns. Can't buy it locally without an rx, can't get the rx without a doctor's appointment, much simpler to make sure it is bought and kept in the trauma kit.

Along with gauze rolls, non-stick pads, some proper bandage materials, tapes, wound cleaner (even simple saline), hot and cold "slap" packs, and a few other things. Personally I won't buy Betadyne because the red color has been known to hide the red from an infection. There's white iodine and other products that don't have that problem, they just cost a little more.

And hydrogen peroxide has been taken off a number of lists for similar reasons. It kills all living tissue, including yours, so it sterilizes and then leaves you with a wound full of dead tissue--a great way to start a bad infection. HP is good for surface cleaning or for cleaning a deep dirty wound that can't be treated better at the moment, but you're better off using saline and antibiotic cream if you can.

And I'd never stock a trauma kit without "QuikClot" or something similar. We used to use plain granulated sugar (it's relatively sterile and water-washable) to aid clotting on a wound, but the new products come from combat medicine and do a much better job. Yes, it means there is more to clean off when professional treatment is available--but it stops bleeding rapidly if you're not going to get that treatment for days.

Every couple of years the medical establishment changes their thinking. Even with CPR, the standards for compression/vs/ breaths were something like 50:2, now 30:2, but the standard that is already replacing them says compression only--no breaths at all!

So it pays to check on changing standards (no more vaseline on ticks, either!) and to look at stocking a real trauma kit for a boat, not just some "mommy I got a booboo" box from the drug store for ten bucks. That box does serve a purpose, it keeps the daytrippers out of the trauma kit.<G>

But real trauma kits, ready made, tend to be damned expensive. A Pelican case, or hard platic toolbox, with your own stock in it, will be half the cost. Add a good wilderness medicine book or flash cards of some kind, and you're ahead of the game.
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Old 28-09-2010, 14:37   #14
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Sugar is great for fighting established infections (seriously), but not so good for blood clotting. Sugar will have a slight effect of pulling water from serum concentrating the clotting factors, which is what hemostatic products like QC do, but it's not very significant.

Peroxide is counterproductive for the reasons you mention, but on the other hand it's so unstable that a few months after you open the bottle it will have deteriorated, so thats at least not a bad thing.

The CPR standards are due to change again - the report will be out in October/November. The primary emphasis right now for single-person CPR is compressions, got to keep the blood moving. But, the sorry truth is that CPR even done well isn't terribly helpful unless combined with early defibrillation, advanced cardiac life support (drugs) and a cath lab (short-term repair).
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Old 28-09-2010, 16:24   #15
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When we told her we were going off cruising for a couple of months, our doctor was happy to write us scripts for an epi pen and a couple of different antibiotics.

We didn't need any of them, but it was good to know we had them when we were off in some of the more remote spots, where help might be a day away or more.
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