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The seriousness of the wound doesn't always correspond with the size of the wound or the amount of blood loss. For example, a small superficial scalp wound may bleed heavily because of the rich blood supply to the head. Bleeding from an artery is more serious and may take longer to stop.

A certain volume of blood is necessary to maintain circulation; therefore the victim's pulse will weaken as blood is lost. The important thing for you to do is stay calm, take steps to control the bleeding, and obtain medical assistance as quickly as possible.


  • Do not push anything back into the skin.

  • Do not apply ointment or cream.

  • Do not remove blood-soaked bandage.

The best way to control bleeding is with direct pressure over the site of the wound, preferably applied by the victim. If this is impossible, apply a protective barrier between your skin, and the victims wound and apply direct pressure. Please observe the cautions about coming in contact with a victim's body fluids in the First Aid section.

  • Use a pad of sterile gauze if available.

  • A sanitary napkin or clean handkerchief will do. Even a bare hand, preferably the victim's, if necessary, will also do. But you best avoid exchange of bodily fluids with the victim with a protective barrier.

  • You or the victim apply firm, steady, direct pressure for five to fifteen minutes. Most bleeding will stop within a few minutes.

  • If bleeding is from a foot, hand, leg, or arm use gravity to help slow the flow of blood. Elevate the limb so that it is higher off the ground than

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