Adventure Medical Kits - Adventure Discussions

Frustrated with Group Size/Trip Duration Rating

FAKs rated by people/days (2-3 people, 5-7 days) frustrate me. I think a more useful measure might be people/”time to help”. I bought the Field Trauma kit because I was looking for a kit to use where assistance was 1-2 hours away, I want the kit to answer “What will kill the victim in 1-2 hours?” – Bleeding, not breathing. If a 1″x3″ bandage will stop it, you won’t die today from it. We’re within 2-6 hours of aid, so what do I need to keep a victim alive till we get help?



Thanks for sharing your frustrations with the Group Size, Trip Duration Rating. Let me share a story with you. Back in 1989 when we launched Adventure Medical Kits, our only kit we sold was the $190 Comprehensive Kit in our current Mountain Series. This was much more comprehensive than anything on the market at the time. An editor from Outside Magazine was reviewing the kit and he asked me what I would take out of the kit to make it lighter and smaller. And I asked him what injury or illness does he not want to be prepared for?. How about taking out Glutose Paste for Insulin Shock or the oral rehydration salts for dehydration? How about taking out the Sawyer Extractor Snake Bite Kit?

A few years later, Dr. Weiss wrote the book, A Comprehensive Guide to Wilderness & Travel Medicine, to help people treat injuries and illnesses when medical care will not arrive. He included “Weiss Advice” improvisational techniques in the book so you can improvise when you don’t have the medical supplies you need. For example, page seven has a tip on how to improvise a CPR barrier using a nitrile glove. The section on treating insulin shock suggests using Glutose Paste but if you don’t have it use sugar granules under the tongue will work. The section on rehydration goes over treating dehydration with oral rehydration salts or an improvised solution using fruit juice, honey and salt. Dr. Weiss’s book is your guide to keeping someone alive until help arrives whether it is two hours or two days away.

Back to the question on classifying kits. We are working on a more sophisticated set of metrics to help people choose the right medical kit for their adventure. While group size and trip duration will be one of the metrics, others like risk factor, hours away from medical care and level of first aid training will come into play as well. Your question is timely and will help spur us on in the development of these new metrics.

Thanks, Frank

Frank Meyer

Marketing Director/Co-Founder


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