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Source: Papers On Health
After a fall from a height, where there is no apparent
outward injury, there is often such a severe shock to the spinal cord
and brain that continued unconsciousness occurs. In such a case, foment
the spine at first, to remove the effects of the concussion. This may
bring on serious difficulty of breathing, owing to congestion of the
spinal cord. This can be removed by applying cold cloths along the
spine. If the difficulty of breathing be present from the first, then
apply the cold at once. The first effect of such a fall is to deprive
the brain and spinal cord of vital force. This must be restored by
heat. Subsequent effects due to congestion can be removed by cold.
The effects of a shock in a railway accident may be similarly treated.
Common sense will guide in using heat or cold by watching the effect.
Where heat fails try cold. This is the simple rule. It is good also to
give the patient some simple purgative medicine, and some warm drink.
Avoid all doses of alcoholic drinks. We have known the flickering
flame of life almost extinguished by a teaspoonful of brandy.
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