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R.I.C.E.
Sprains and Strains
Rest - Ice - Compression - Elevation

A strain involves overstretching or overuse of a muscle, ligament, or tendon. The area may be swollen and you may find it difficult to use it, move it, or bear weight on it. A sprain involves the tearing of a muscle, ligament, or tendon around a joint. A sprain is more serious than a strain and needs more intense treatment.

R.est - Let the injury rest. The severity of the injury determines how long
I.ce - Apply ice to help keep swelling down for 48 to 72 hours after injury.
C.ompression - Elastic bandages wrapped firmly but not to restrict blood flow.
E.levation - Elevate to heart level, foot above the knee, hand above the elbow.

Color - Compare - Function - Pain
The Circulation Check
Pulse - Sensory - Swelling - Temperature

If you or your doctor wraps the injured area in a bandage or cast, there are circulation checks that you must do to make sure the bandage or cast is not too tight. A too-tight bandage or cast can cut off the blood supply to the injured area and to the hands, fingers, feet, or toes; it can also press on muscles and nerves and damage them.

  • Capillary Refill: Push down on a fingernail or toenail of the injured limb. The pink color of nail will return in 2 to 4 seconds.
  • Color: The injured part is usually paler than the surrounding tissues. If the area is very red, purple, or blue, you should call your doctor.
  • Compare: Compare the injured side (arm, leg) to the other side (arm, leg). Do you notice any changes in color, temperature, and swelling.
  • Function: You should be able to bend or flex the fingers or toes on an injured limb. Call your doctor if you can't bend them or if it hurts when you do so.
  • Pain: You will have some dull, aching pain in the injured area. Call your doctor if you feel a sudden increase in the type or severity of pain.
  • Pulse: There are several pulses that should be felt and counted if an arm or leg is in a cast. The physician will show you how to count the peripheral pulses.
  • Sensory: Call your doctor if the toes or fingers of your injured limb are numb or tingling or feel as if they are asleep. If you are wearing a bandage, loosen it.
  • Swelling: The injured part will be more swollen, but the skin around it should not be tight. Call your doctor if there is swelling or skin tightness.
  • Temperature: The injured part is usually cooler than the surrounding tissues. Call your doctor if it feels warm or hot.

Research Studies
The Clinical Trial
Testing New Treatments

New treatments are tested and monitored in a carefully controlled clinical setting and the results are published. There are three types of clinical trials:

Phase I: Phase I trials determine how to provide a new treatment and how much is safe.The treatment must first be tested on animals and approved for human trials. These trials involve patients with advanced diseases that are willing to undergo new treatments.

Phase II: Phase II trials study the effect of a new treatment on patients whose cancer has not been cured by standard treatments. There is a possibility that the treatment may benefit these patients. A treatment reaching phase II trials has gone through phase I trials.

Phase III: Phase III trials compare new treatments to current treatments. These trials require many patients. One group of patients receives the experimental treatment, and another is given a standard treatment. Randomization is used to keep bias out of the trials.

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