The Israeli Emergency Bandage is a specially designed first-aid device that is used to stop bleeding from hemorrhagic wounds. (Hemorrhagic wounds are simply wounds that bleed). The bandages were invented by the Israeli military medic, Bernard Bar-Natan. Mr. Bar-Natan’s company, First Care, introduced the bandages to the American Military in 2000 and the term ‘Israeli Bandage’ was coined by American soldiers during the operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom.
The bandages were invented to address the problem of death on the battlefield due to the inability to quickly stop the bleeding in a wound that would otherwise not be life threatening. Their ease of use (they can be self-adminstered one handed) and their flexibility in dealing with additional problems has made them an invaluable addition to any first-aid kit and a real life-saving tool on the battlefield.
The emergency bandage is a elasticized bandage with a non-adhesive bandage pad sewn in. It has a built-in pressure bar, which allows the user to twist the bandage around the wound once, and then change the direction of the bandage, wrapping it around the limb or body part, to create pressure on the wound. The pressure bar makes bandaging easier and can be used to apply up to 30 pounds of pressure to the wound. A closure bar at the end of the bandage allows it to clip neatly into place and not slip.
The bandages come in three different sizes: 4, 6, and 8 inches wide. They are similar to elastic bandages that are used to treat sprain injuries, but they have three features that are unique to them:
1: the sterile non-adhering dressing that is designed to allow removing the bandage without reopening a wound.
2: the pressure applicator or the pressure bar that is placed directly over the wound to stop the bleeding by applying pressure makes it possible to wrap the bandage around a wound in different directions. This is a useful feature for stopping bleeding in groin and head injuries.
3: the closure bar that is used to secure the bandage and to apply additional pressure to a wound.
Wrapping a Simple Wound
Place the bandage pad on the wound & wrap the elastic bandage around the wounded body part. Note that the bandage is designed so that you can grip it and pull it open without touching the sterile pad.
Wrap the elastic bandage tightly over the pressure bar and wrap over both edges of the bandage. Notice in this picture how the bandage became much wider? That is because the edges of the original wrap were wrapped over, to seal out dirt or debris.
Secure each end of the closure bar into the bandage. You should be able to easily pry up the last wrap edge on each side and slide the closure bar end into it. Note that the ends of the closure bar have barbs to retain the bandage once it is in place. If you have to re-position it, be careful the barbs do not tear the bandage.
I highly recommend that you watch this video by Persys Medical. It covers a lot more than the basics I have outlined above, and shows how the bandage can be used as a tourniquet or splint as well.