Casualty lifting is the first step of casualty movement, an early aspect of emergency medical care. It is the procedure used to put the casualty (the patient) on a stretcher.
Developed emergency services use lifting devices, such as scoop stretchers, that allow secured lifting with minimal personnel. Other methods (explained below) can be used when such devices are not available.
Since only stabilised casualties are moved (except in unusual circumstances), the lifting is usually never performed in emergency; emergency movements are sometimes performed to respect the Golden Hour. This depends on the organisation of the medical services and on the specific circumstances.
Maximum care must be taken to avoid to worsen an unstable trauma. The head-neck-chest axis must be kept straight to protect the spine, and the first responders must keep the patient's body stable (no movement of the feet) during the lift.
The first responders have to carry a heavy load (probably more than 20 kg for an adult casualty) in an uncomfortable position. There is thus a risk of injury to the carrier, especially of the lumbar back. To avoid an injury, they must push with their legs (quadriceps), trying to keep their back straight.
Famous quotes containing the word lifting:
“Strange that so few ever come to the woods to see how the pine lives and grows and spires, lifting its evergreen arms to the light,to see its perfect success; but most are content to behold it in the shape of many broad boards brought to market, and deem that its true success! But the pine is no more lumber than man is, and to be made into boards and houses is no more its true and highest use than the truest use of a man is to be cut down and made into manure.”
—Henry David Thoreau (18171862)