Stop the Bleed: Uncontrolled bleeding is still number one cause of preventable death

Direct pressure is the first step to stem uncontrolled bleeding, followed by a tourniquet and then wound packing. (KATU)

At least one of the three victims in last spring's horrific stabbing on a MAX train survived when a stranger applied direct pressure to a bleeding neck wound.

A nationwide campaign seeks to teach the public what to do when confronted with uncontrolled bleeding.

Doctors at OHSU will conduct a series of 90-minute “Stop the Bleed” classes in the coming months.

“Whether it's after a car crash or it's an active shooter or a stabbing or something of that nature where the paramedics or EMS is not readily on-site, there is still an opportunity for the public to learn how to control bleeding and save lives,” said OHSU trauma surgeon Dr. David Zonies.

He says applying direct pressure is the best way to start, followed by a tourniquet.

If the bleeding doesn't stop, a second tourniquet may be required, followed by packing the wound with gauze or cloth.

“Because uncontrolled bleeding is still the number one cause of preventable death after an injury in the field, what we’re attempting to do is bring this type of education and training to the lay public,” Zonies said.

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