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first aid

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first aid, immediate and temporary treatment of a victim of sudden illness or injury while awaiting the arrival of medical aid. Proper early measures may be instrumental in saving life and ensuring a better and more rapid recovery. The avoidance of unnecessary movement and over-excitation of the victim often prevents further injury. Conditions that require immediate attention to avert death include cessation of breathing ( asphyxia ), severe bleeding, poisoning, strokes , and heart attack. The essentials of first aid treatment also include the correct bandaging of a wound; the application of splints for fractures and dislocations; the effective methods of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and artificial respiration ; and treatment of shock , frostbite , fainting , bites and stings, burns , and heat exhaustion .

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The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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