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roamingyak.org 26 Aug 2003 03:13

First Aid Kits

Travelling with the load space of a vehicle it seems I can probably carry a bigger first aid kit than I have before in my backpack.

I thought a small one to have near the driving position in case I wake up after a crash and a much bigger one stashed somewhere.

Anybody know where I can get a decent sized first aid kit from (ie: not the chain camping shops who tend to sell to backpackers etc) - something that would last a year or two etc

Cheers, Darrin

ChrisC 26 Aug 2003 04:12


try Nomad travel store in North London, they can and will do any size medical kit you need.



roamingyak.org 26 Aug 2003 14:41

Thanks mate,

Yeah I have their catalogue - just wondering if their is anyhting 'better' out there than the type found in the camping shops etc

Cheers, Darrin

Toby2 26 Aug 2003 16:56

The alternative is probably to get in touch with someone like the St John's ambulance service or a Doctor or nurse and put your own together. You just need the list of things that you need. Should be easy enough to walk into somewhere and buy all the bits. Thats what we ended up doing. Think it would probably work out significantly cheaper and you make more conscious decisions about what to take and not take rather than just taking what ever is handed over in the box.

[This message has been edited by Toby2 (edited 26 August 2003).]

ChrisC 27 Aug 2003 05:57


the problem is that most Dr's and Nurse's will not /would not risk selling you equip that they in theory would have to steal and any prescription drugs would be even harder.
However, Nomad are experienced in this area and can sell you as much or as little as you want.
My kit from them covered pretty much everything and although we didn't use aloit of it, we were happy that we had it - peace of mind.


ekaphoto 27 Aug 2003 23:49

A couple of suggestions from a former paramedic for you kit.

paramedic shears (they cut through even heavy leather)
benedryl or another antihistimine
duct tape
band aids
steril water or saline
sam splint

The rest is up to you. Various bandages etc for stopping blood.

The most important thing is your knowledge. Our favorite splint for an injured ankle was a pillow and duct tape, not all the fancy splints. It worked better and was more comfortable. Good luck and lets hope you don't need any of your kit.


roamingyak.org 28 Aug 2003 02:12

Thanks all,

sam splint
> I'm not sure what these are?

The most important thing is your knowledge.
> Well I'm stuffed then :-)

ctc 28 Aug 2003 14:24

Picking up on the skills point. First aid courses are essential such that you are able to assist as opposed to further harm the person. Unfortunately in this country (UK)it is expected that you can get to a hospital within a few hours (worst case) and first aid is about stabilisation rather than cure. What you as a first aider are expected to do is gradually being dumbed down for fear of litigation over a mistake to the extent that you cant even give someone a paracetomol now, unless they ask you for it!!

Try therefore to get on a first aid course aimed at outdoor pursuits. Either through some mountaineering or sail training organisation.

Some good books have been published in the US such as Wilderness Medicine. These cover treatment as as well as first aid which is useful in the context of an expedition. There are some amusing lines where the author is trying to persuade his US readers not to empty rifle cartridges onto open wounds rambo style and light the nitro powder in an attempt to cauterise the wound!!!

There is a tendancy toward overkill when it comes to kitting yourself up for first aid but it goes a long way to providing peace of mind. It also means that you can provide help to the local population which spreads goodwill.

Toby2 28 Aug 2003 16:35

Just to clarify, the idea was that Doctors or nurses help work out the list, not create an illicet industry in stealing medical supplies. You simply agree a list and then go off and buy it at Boots or somewhere else. The main idea is that you put more thought into what your taking and its possibly cheaper than buying a made up kit.

[This message has been edited by Toby2 (edited 28 August 2003).]

[This message has been edited by Toby2 (edited 28 August 2003).]

ctc 28 Aug 2003 16:55

Info: A Sam splint is a thin, foam covered rectangular strip of radiolucent aluminum. It is lightweight, soft and maleable. A single curve or bend placed in cross section along any longitudinal axis gives the whole thing rigidity. This strength along with the versatility permitted by maleability makes the Sam Splint suitable for splinting almost any body part.

ChrisC 29 Aug 2003 04:28


sorry wasn't saying that Toby was trying to encourage theft etc just that you would have to purchase any 'drugs'.
Nomad will supply prescription drugs such as anti-biotics. Contact them to discuss, they also do a good but basic one day first-aid course - based on what might need to know away from help.
The most useable and indepth course I have come across and personally done, is run by Wilderness Medical - Far from Home, and their Bush Doctor course. These are intended for Expedition Medics etc, it is run by doctors and nurses who have past and present hospital and expedition experience. They cover everything from the very basics to diagnosis of medical and psychotic ailments, major trauma, snake bites, the various forms of Malaria and all kinds of other tropical diseases. It was exceptionally informative and they have set courses or can tailor them - at a cost!

Hope this helps - and didn't mean to insult anyone.
Happy travels



ekaphoto 29 Aug 2003 05:36

Eppinefrin or adrenlin is used in case of severe allergic reaction. In hospitales etc it is injected, however in the US it is sold over the counter in an inhaled form as primatene mist. What happens in an allergic reaction is you airway closes and you sufficate. (other thigs happen as well but this is the worst) I have seen it many times and it happens increadbly fast. What the eppinefrin does is dialated your broncial tubes (airway) so you can breath. The benedryl stopes the reaction from progressing. Ok so your airway is closing down and I am advising you to get an inhalation spray, What is wrong with this picture? The idea is use the inhalation spray and try to get some in you before you close down. Anything will help. Also in the US a doctor will prescribe an auto injector if you have a severe allergy, I dought you can get one for you first aid kit. As for training a basic EMT course is not that hard and about a semester long at the local collage in the US. Wilderness medic course, lots of reading etc will also help. Hope this helps. Any questions e-mail me and I will try to answer.



Anitbiotic ointment and over the counter anti inflamitory drugs (tylenol, asprin etc) are a good idea. Also take a good supply of Immodal (for diarreah) and Iodine tabs for emergency water purification.

[This message has been edited by ekaphoto (edited 28 August 2003).]

fireboomer 10 Oct 2003 14:21

Quickly read through this topic. Lots of great hints and tips in it.

My perspective on Basic First Aid or BLS (Basis Life Support) comes down to:
1. CPR
2. be able to stop bleeding
3. clean out wounds + dress them
4. splint fractures + prep a patient for transport if needed.

These things are basicly the lifesaving techniques. Don't get me wrong, this is only first aid. Besides that there is the whole human homeostasis (balance in your body of things) you wonna keep an eye on as good as possible with the little resources / knowledge you have (I suppose you are not a doctor).

There is a lot to be said about first aid, wilderness techniques, BLS (basic life support) procedures... But without propper training there is not much you can do with the knowledge.

Speaking out of the field my biggest advice is to get a decent training with good simulations. That way you get a feel of things and 'some' hands on experience.
Wether I am biking, backpacking, car riding,... I always carry an extensive first aid kit. And almost every trip I have to fill it up when I get home...

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