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Soft Tissue Injuries

These are injuries that can occur to muscles, ligaments and other soft tissues with or without a fracture.

The injuries that most commonly occur are sprains, strains, dislocations and bruising.

It's often as aresult of a sudden wrenching movement at the joint that pulls the bones within the joint too far apart and tears the tissues surrounding the joint.

Sign and Symptoms

  • Sudden pain in the joint 
  • Loss of power and ability to bear weight 
  • Swelling if near joint 
  • Tenderness and discoloration

First Aid Management

The management for soft tissue injuries is based on resting the injured part, applying ice packs to limit swelling and reduce pain, applying a firm compression bandage as support and to further restrict swelling, and elevating the limb. This is known as the RICE treatment.

Rest tends to reduce the flow of blood to a part. Resting the casualty allows the blood pressure and pulse rate to drop, and this also reduces the flow of blood around the body. This helps to reduce bleeding

Ice helps to limit inflammation and reduce pain by causing the blood vessels to constrict, restricting the amount of fluid and swelling in the injured part

Compression helps to narrow bleeding vessels and reduce swelling. It also provides support to the injury to reduce the risk of further damage

Elevation of the injured part helps to reduce the blood pressure and flow of blood

What should you do?

We all respond to emergencies in different ways.

Whether trained or untrained, some of us are afraid we will do the wrong thing and make the situation worse.

If you are unsure about what to do, call for an ambulance.

The worst thing to do is to do nothing.