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How to Treat Shock

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Prompt home treatment can save the life of a person who is in shock.

  • Call 911 or other emergency services.
  • Have the person lie down. If there is an injury to the head, neck, or chest, keep the legs flat. Otherwise, raise the person's legs at least 12 in. (30 cm).
  • If the person vomits, roll him or her to one side to let fluids drain from the mouth. If you think the person might have a neck or back injury, gently roll the person's head, neck, shoulders, and body together as a unit (logroll).
  • Stop any bleeding, and splint any broken bones.
  • Keep the person warm but not hot. Put a blanket under the person, and cover him or her with a sheet or blanket, depending on the weather. If the person is in a hot place, try to keep the person cool.
  • Take the person's pulse in case medical staff on the phone need to know how fast or slow it is. Take it again if the person's condition changes.
  • Try to keep the person calm.
ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerWilliam H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerDavid Messenger, MD
Last RevisedApril 5, 2012

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: April 05, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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