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G'day all,

during last week I got back home from my (too brief) motorcycle ride to Carnarvon & Gascoyne Junction.

On the second afternoon of my ride, I arrived at the Geraldton home of some friends I'd not seen for a few years. Sat around chatting, looking at their new home, my mate's bikes & other toys and consumed a few beers - as you do. Then a few hours later and while his wife had nipped out to the late deli for some antacids to ease his indigestion, my mate Pat collapsed on the kitchen floor. I thought he'd fainted but soon realised it was more serious.

I'm still kicking myself for not having a bloody clue what to do. Luckily his wife returned while I was getting through to the ambos & she knew some CPR skills & with advice from the abulance centre we performed CPR for about 25 mins till the paramedics told us to stop. It seems he suffered a fairly major heart attack & it's inlikely we could have saved him but I am still haunted by my feelings of complete uselessness when I first saw him as I realised I had no idea of what to do.

I've never had any emergency or first aid training, something I am resolved to remedy very soon. I quite often spend time with mates (and others) in remote places when motorcycle touring and camping and we're all getting older and less resilient. I can't believe how much I've had my head buried in the sand about not having learned any skills to look after any of 'em if anything happens, be it accident or health related.

Sorry for the tragic tone of this post but I want to encourage as many people as possible to learn some first aid skills & to LEARN CPR! Don't do as I've done for way too long and pretend it'll never happen. You never know just when you may need it. Pat was 46 ! He lived life to the full and didn't look after himself as well as he should have - but how many of us do? I wish I could look back at the incident and feel confident I'd done all that was possible for anyone to do. I know I did all I could but...

I continued my trip & had a great time & saw some very interesting coastlines that I'm now dreaming of yakfishing. I can't wait to get back up there! Then, on the way home I attended Pat's funeral and wake. The time spent with so many of his friends and family remembering his life was a great help in coming to terms with the matter.

Two weeks after his death and the tragedy still dominates my thoughts. It's helped me to decide not to postpone a few things and to enjoy what life has to offer. So I can't wait for some good weather so I can get out on my Swing again. In fact the urge got so great that on Friday evening I went out for a paddle, in the rain! Only got a few undersize salmon but it definitely cleared my head for the weekend.

So please, LEARN CPR and more first aid skills.

And enjoy the life you have... This forum helps me do that :D
 

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Dave: Don't feel too bad, if the ambos said you could not have helped you probably could not have. I used to be training manager for St. John up in Darwin. I've been in your shoes trying to do cpr on someone who I knew full well wasn't going to respond.

I second your suggestion for everyone to learn it thru who ever you like, Red Cross, St. John, it does not matter, get out there and do it - doesn't cost much and who knows when you might need it.

All of my certifications have now expired; however, I have not forgotten. Even if they do keep changing the rules

As yakfishers we are often in isolated situations and we all would be well advised to LEARN

Cheers
Duncan
 

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Daveyak,
Sorry to here of the loss of your friend.
In my job I have to administer first aid a lot.
CPR applied corrrectly has about 25% chance of survival untill help arrives. Masssive heart attacts are way less.
St Johns and most tafes, communitty learning centres all offer the basic first aid courses, and refreshers. As we are all getting older chances are
we will need to know it.
 

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I'm an ex-nurse and former army medic amoungst many other things.
 

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Unfortunately, due to the change in ownership of this web site and the lack of response by the owners to my requests to remove my email address from all administrative-level notifications and functionality, I have decided to remove my posts on AKFF. Thank you for the great times, the fantastic learning experiences and the many many fish. If you are desperate for the old content of this particular post, it is available below base64 encoded and bzip2 compressed.

Red.

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Dave, sorry to hear about the loss of your mate. :(

Again, I don't want to sound morbid but you did mention that his wife had to duck out to get him some antacid for his 'indigestion'. I've also known a few men aged in their late 40's and 50's that constantly complain about their indigestion only to have a heart attack. Luckily most of the guys I've known have survived but it certainly is a big wake up call.

Its also interesting to hear that on their follow up visits with their doctors the doctors ask them whether they've experienced any chest pains or tingling in the arms/shoulder area previous to their heart attack. When they tell the doctors that they've had a 'bit of indigestion' it usually turns out that these have been a series of very minor heart attacks and the body's way of telling them that there was something wrong.

So, again take Dave's advice and if you feel something strange or feel a bit off, go and get it checked out, it may just save your life. 8)
 

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Sorry about the loss of a mate..... it is always a shock when this happens.
I agree learn basic first aid and get a first aid kit that goes everywhere you do. First aid practices are constantly updating and CPR has just changed in the last few months.
 

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Sorry to hear about the loss of your friend. I have no cpr or any first aid training but you have definantly inspired me to do so in the near future!! Thank you!!
 

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Dave
sorry to hear about your mate - so many conditions can mimic a heart attack and it is sometimes difficult for medical staff to diagnose - something we call differential diagnosis. I'm a great believer that everyone should know F/A - it should be taught in all schools - from primary all the way through - refresher course when you get your drivers liscence and so on.
CPR is very effective and is first in the chain of survival - current resus guidlines indicate that compressions are more beneficial than oxygenation, but the guidlines change every few years.
Unfortunately when your time is up - it is up and nothing can change that - 14yrs as an ambo and intensive care para have taught me this
 
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