The Revision Guide for Student Nurses (Part I)

First Aid - Summary & Further Reading

In any first aid situation, the most important thing to remember is to keep calm. Common sense is of utmost importance, and many emergencies can be dealt with effectively providing the first-aider keeps their wits about them. You may remember the headline about a human life being saved on a plane when an emergency tracheostomy was performed using the plastic casing of a Biro. This just goes to prove the importance of quick thinking.

Never forget how distressed the owner of the animal is likely to be in first-aid situations. The client will often want to be present during an examination, but if they are shocked themselves, it may be better to ensure that a colleague stays with them in a private area away from the treatment room where they can sit quietly.

Practical experience is essential, and you should aim to assist the veterinary surgeons and experienced nurses with as many first aid cases as possible in order to gain valuable knowledge. Always ask a colleague if you are unsure, and remember that this applies to telephone emergencies too.

Recommended reading:

  • Veterinary Nursing (Butterworth Heinemann) - Edited by D R Lane & B Cooper - Chapter 3 First Aid by S Hiscock.
  • Multiple Choice Questions in Veterinary Nursing Volume 1 (Butterworth Heinemann) - The College of Animal Welfare.
  • Veterinary Nursing: Self Assessment Questions & Answers Book 1 (Butterworth Heinemann) - by J E Ouston.
  • Practical Veterinary Nursing (BSAVA) - Edited by Gillian Simpson - First Aid by C Van der Heiden.
  • The Henston Small Animal Vade Mecum (Henston Veterinary Publications) - Edited by Jim Evans - Useful information: Poisons & Antidotes.