How effective hypothermia management in a military setting could prevent a fatality
It’s a common misconception that hypothermia is only a risk factor when a casualty is exposed to cold and/or wet weather for a long period of time. While cool temperatures, wind, and precipitation in a battlefield situation will increase the risk of a significantly injured person developing hypothermia, a traumatic injury can also play a part if there is a significant level of blood loss.
Hypothermia and the ‘Lethal Triad’
For soldiers who have suffered trauma, however, hypothermia is part of a far more dangerous condition known as the Lethal Triad. In this situation, hypothermia management is more complex and time-critical.
In the Lethal Triad, a combination of three conditions – hypothermia, acidosis, and coagulopathy significantly increase the risk of death. These three conditions are part of a complex relationship, in which each can worsen the other, quickly leading to higher mortality.
When severe bleeding occurs we lose the ability to generate our own heat which exacerbates hypothermia, oxygen delivery is reduced which promotes the release of lactic acid into the bloodstream and stimulates acidosis. As a result, coagulation (blood clotting) worsens. The Lethal Triad becomes a complex cycle of reactions that will accelerate the casualty towards death.
To manage the Lethal Triad it is important to effectively manage hypothermia, allowing us to break the cycle.
The Xtract™SR Heatsaver: a passive insulating solution for austere environments
The Xtract™SR Heatsaver has been designed by military experts to provide battlefield casualties with the insulation and protection they need to reduce the risk of hypothermia and onset of the lethal triad. With sculpted insulation panels focused around the core of the body, the Xtract™SR Heatsaver assists preserving the casualty’s core body temperature, working to break the cycle of hypothermia, acidosis, and coagulopathy that is so dangerous when the Lethal Triad occurs.
The Xtract™SR Heatsaver provides:
- Effective heat retention immediately after the point-of-wounding.
- A practical sized solution that allows deployment in battlefield conditions.
- Additional comfort to assist prolonged field care.
- Compatibility with active heating solutions.
Our hypothermia management solutions have undergone extensive testing in both laboratory cold rooms and operational cold climates to ensure they replicate the challenges faced in hostile battlefield situations. Our comprehensive testing regime has been designed to prove the effectiveness and validity of our equipment, giving you confidence that our solutions will help to save lives when military personnel are injured in action.
Contact TSG Associates to find out more