Indore: Akruti Malhotra, a manager in Toyota, was fortunate enough that HoD of Orthopedics Department Dr Dinesh Sonkar was passing the spot where her vehicle was overturned and she was struggling for life on November 1.
During that crucial hour, Dr Sonkar, using his expertise, gave her a new lease of life in that ‘Golden Hour,’ one hour time after any traumatic injury.
After finding Akruti stuck in the car, he cut the seat belt with a surgical blade and immediately prevented her from airway and breathing blockage and also set her posture for proper blood circulation till the ambulance reached the spot.
The patient was admitted to a private hospital and she recovered well after 18 days.
Highlighting the importance of ‘Golden Hour’, with his own experience, Dr Sonkar said, “I was returning from Bhopal when I saw a man severely injured calling for help. I and my son Dr Yashwardhan reached there and found a woman critically injured and stuck in the vehicle.”
Along with informing police and ambulance, Dr Sonkar took out the patient and prevented her tongue fall to keep her breathing. Akruti, a resident of Mahalaxmi Nagar, thanked Dr Sonkar for his efforts after discharging from the hospital.
“At least 50 per cent deaths can be averted if victims are taken to a hospital within the first hour. The first 10 minutes are called ‘Platinum Ten’ but it can be extended to Golden Hour,” Dr Sonkar said.
He further said that not only doctors but also local residents can provide initial treatment to the patient, which will decrease chances of fatalities.
“However, due to unawareness, people use to follow some traditional but wrong methods as the primary treatment, which could prove more dangerous to the victim,” he said adding ‘a WHO report on ‘pre-hospital trauma care systems’ states that most sophisticated and well-equipped pre-hospital trauma care system can do little if bystanders fail to recognise the seriousness of a situation, call for help, and provide basic care until the help arrives.”
“The one hour time is not only applicable in terms of road accidents but it can also be applicable in other medical emergencies like heart attacks, strokes and others. If the victim can be stabilised and transported safely to a hospital in this time limit, his or her life can be saved,” he added.
Origin of term ‘Golden Hour’
Late Dr R Adams Cowley is credited with promoting this concept, first in his capacity as a military surgeon and later as head of the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center. The concept of ‘Golden Hour’ may have been derived from French military World War-I data.
Do’s and Don’ts to save ‘Golden Hour’
Dr Sonkar said that as per the orders of Supreme Court dated March 30, police cannot force the bystander or persons helping the victim to reveal his identity. Police cannot even force him to come to the police station and to the court for interrogation.
- Take out victim from damaged vehicle
- Put victim’s legs up for proper blood circulation
- Turn his face so that blood in his mouth comes out to prevent blockage
- Give a cardiac massage till the help reaches
- Don’t rush from the scene in fear of police
- Don’t pull the victim out of vehicle in a hurry
- Don’t give him water as it can block the oesophagus