Recognizing Signs of a Medical Emergency

Medical emergencies can happen any place and at any time.  Those who are preparing for long-term disasters need to familiarize themselves with signs of medical distress. Recognizing these signs when they first appear can help take the appropriate next steps in a timely fashion.

You can help the individual you support to learn these warning signs and symptoms of some common medical emergencies listed below:

  • Difficulty breathing, shortness of breath
  • Chest or upper abdominal pain or pressure lasting two minutes or more
  • Fainting, sudden dizziness, weakness, seizure
  • Possible serious bone fractures
  • Major burns
  • Changes in vision
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Confusion or changes in mental status, unusual behavior, difficulty waking
  • Any sudden or severe pain
  • Head pain that lasts longer than five minutes
  • Uncontrolled bleeding
  • Shock symptoms, e.g., confusion, disorientation, cool/clammy, pale skin
  • Severe or persistent vomiting or diarrhea
  • Coughing or vomiting blood
  • Unusual abdominal pain
  • Suicidal or homicidal feelings

Knowing these signs and acting quickly could save the individual’s life.  Get treatment promptly.  For many medical emergencies, time is very important.  Some people experience the symptoms of an emergency, such as a stroke or a heart attack, but do not get help right away.  A delay in treatment could lead to a more serious illness.

Prepper's Cookbook

Tess Pennington is the author of The Prepper’s Cookbook: 300 Recipes to Turn Your Emergency Food into Nutritious, Delicious, Life-Saving Meals. When a catastrophic collapse cripples society, grocery store shelves will empty within days. But if you follow this book’s plan for stocking, organizing and maintaining a proper emergency food supply, your family will have plenty to eat for weeks, months or even years. Visit her web site at

This information has been made available by Ready Nutrition

Originally published August 11th, 2011
If you found this article useful, please Vote for Ready Nutrition as a top prepper web site.
share this article with others
related reading
featured today

Leave A Comment...
Ready Nutrition Home Page

52 Weeks to Preparedness
Ready Nutrition Articles By Category
Looking for something specific on our site? Start your search in our list of articles by main category topic.