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There are many types of shock. The first is caused by blood loss or trauma where either blood leaves the circulatory system internally or externally or the circulatory system fails to cause blood pooling in the circulatory system. With shock, this causes a lack of oxygen to the body's tissues. 

SIGNS & SYMPTOMS: Restlessness, dizziness, confusion, cool moist skin, anxiety, delayed capillary refill time, and weakness.

Another type of shock is where the body has an allergic reaction to a substance that has been eaten, injected, or inhaled. This is called Anaphylactic shock and will be covered later.

Treatment for shock is simple. Because there is not enough blood in the circulatory system, you can temporarily adjust the balance of blood by elevating the person's legs 15-30cm, allowing blood to flow back to the vital parts of the body.

·      Make sure the patient is comfortable.

·      Elevate the legs 15-30 cm.

·      Activate EMS.

**Never elevate the legs if you suspect spinal injury or other limb damage.**

Hypovolaemic Shock is when there is not enough blood circulating in the body’s circulatory system. This can be a result of bleeding or other damage.

Neurogenic shock is where the body does not have control of the circulatory system.

Cardiogenic Shock is a poorly functioning heart.


Fainting is a mild form of shock and is not often deemed to be serious enough to activate EMS. Fainting occurs due to lack of oxygen to the brain and a drop in blood pressure.

While in themselves these are not serious occurrences, the underlying cause may be. Therefore, you should alert the emergency services if someone faints. People can faint for a number of reasons such as overheating, emotional stress, and pregnancy, as well as more serious conditions like epilepsy, diabetes, anaphylaxis, or other serious medical conditions.

When someone faints, you need to ensure that they are breathing and the airway is open. Raise the legs to increase the blood pressure within the body’s vital organs. It is important with fainting (regardless of the cause) for the patient to stay down until the EMS arrived. Standing up will cause the blood to flow from their vital organs risking causing a more serious situation to arise.