The heart pumps a million barrels of blood during the average lifetime, enough to fill three supertankers! But, losing just one gallon could mean the difference between life and death. Now, there's a new and simple first-aid tool that one cop says saved his life and could save many more.
Shoot-outs between good guys and bad guys happen in action flicks all the time, but for police officer Gerald Veneziano it was no movie.
"He hit my face three times, my leg, my arm and my chest," said Veneziano.
One bullet hit an artery in the law-man's thigh. He could have bled to death.
"We located a heavy bleeding gunshot wound right above his leg," said Officer Michael Orr, who provided first aid.
Orr was first on the scene. In his first aid kit was something he'd used as a marine in Iraq, treated gauze that can stop bleeding
"And turn a regular piece of surgical gauze into a very powerful hemostatic agent," explained Brian Herrman , Z-medica CEO,
QuikClot has a blood-clotting agent embedded into its fibers. The company that makes it claims it can stop bleeding in less than three minutes.
"All the tests we've done before showed a 600% improvement in the time to hemostatic in time to actually clot and stop bleeding then regular gauze or regular manual pressure," Herrman said.
It's been used by the U.S. military and now the company has donated 15-thousand units of QuikClot to the Syrian American medical society to help victims of the bloody clashes in Syria.
"Obviously it saves lives; I carry it on me personally," said Orr.
Veneziano says he wouldn't be here without QuikClot. "It saved my life," he said.
Veneziano is back on duty. Since the shooting his police department has issued QuikClot gauze to every one of its officer. You can buy QuikClot online. Various packs of it can vary from $10 to $40.
BACKGROUND: The average adult has about five liters of blood living inside of their body, delivering essential elements, and removing harmful wastes. Because it contains living cells, blood is alive. Red blood cells and white blood cells are responsible for nourishing and cleansing the body. When the human body loses a little bit of blood through a minor wound, the platelets cause the blood to clot so that the bleeding stops. Because new blood is always being made inside of your bones, the body can replace the lost blood. When the human body loses a lot of blood through a major wound, that blood has to be replaced through a blood transfusion from other people. (Source: Fi.edu)
HOW BLOOD CLOTS: The process by which blood clots and prevents wounds from continual bleeding is called coagulation. Clotting begins almost immediately after the lining of a blood vessel is damaged by an injury. Once blood is exposed to certain proteins, platelets form a plug at the site of the injury. Other proteins then form fibrin strands, which strengthen the plug. The coagulation process works in conjunction with the body's immune system to trap invading microbes in the blood clot and help protect the body. Problems with coagulation may predispose a person to hemorrhage or thrombosis (the formation of a blood clot within the vessel), causing an obstruction of blood flow.
SAVING LIVES WITH GAUZE: QuikClot is composed of rayon/polyester gauze that has been impregnated with kaolin, a white aluminosilicate. The gauze does not contain botanicals or materials from animal or human sources. It has been known for many years that the intrinsic blood clotting pathway is initiated by negatively charged surfaces such as kaolin or glass1. Kaolin is utilized routinely in reagents that are used to assay blood clotting times by clinical laboratories that follow procedures that are published by the College of American Pathologists. In the military, is the first line of treatment for life-threatening hemorrhage on external wounds that are not amendable to tourniquet placement. (Source: Z-Medica)