Domestic emergencies are sudden situations in a home environment that require immediate medical attention because of danger to the health or life of the patient.


Domestic emergencies include a variety of accidents and dangerous situations that occur in a home environment and require immediate medical attention. Important are scalds and burns that can be caused by fireplaces, stoves or spilled cooking water. But injuries from sharp or sharp kitchen instruments can also lead to a domestic emergency. Burns and scalds require immediate cooling. If the skin is closed over the area, you can cool it with running water. If it is an open injury, a sterile bandage must be put on and an ice pack placed on top. Bleeding injuries must be brought to a standstill, possibly under pressure. Even falls are especially at home in elderly people. Feared here is the femoral neck fracture, which can not only lead to heavy bleeding, but also to complicated treatment courses in the subsequent hospital treatment.

It is important to clarify the cause of the fall. If the patient can not remember the process, it is to be assumed that he or she has lost consciousness due to a seizure or circulatory disorders. CT of the head to exclude cerebral hemorrhage and ultrasound of the vessels to exclude circulatory disorders are arranged in this case.

Cardiac arrhythmias can also lead to unconsciousness with associated falls. For this reason, always an ECG should be written.

Electric accidents are also common, but most go off lightly and without dangerous cardiac arrhythmias or burns. Poisoning and drowning usually take place in households with small children. Especially unsupervised children or environments with unsecured garden ponds and accessible household or medicine cabinets are a great danger. With 4, 500 drowning accidents in Germany every year, this is a relatively common cause of accidents.

Poisoning must be treated immediately in the clinic either by vomiting, by pumping out the stomach or by hemodialysis. Even after drowning accidents and immediately initiated first aid measures, the child must be taken to the clinic for monitoring.
Another domestic emergency is the ingestion or suffocation. Especially hastily swallowed large bites can move the esophagus (Bolustod) or the trachea and sometimes lead to acute and life-threatening situations. In case of failure of the Heimlich handle ventilation of the patient should be started in order to push the bolus further into the lungs. The last chance offers the chest compressions.
In general, it should be noted that in case of domestic emergencies calm should be kept calm and the patient should be persuaded. The emergency doctor, who should be informed by calling 112, should ask: What happened ?, where did it happen? how many people are involved? be answered calmly, briefly and succinctly. It is important to communicate the exact address without which no emergency doctor can move out. Domestic emergencies are common in Germany every day. But only a few do need an emergency medical aid. Especially drowning accidents unfortunately have a relatively poor survival rate, as patients are often discovered too late.

General approach to domestic emergencies

For home emergencies, the same procedure should always be followed. Although the actions vary from disease to disease, some initial measures should be taken in every emergency.
An emergency doctor should necessarily be informed by calling 112. The person being called will always ask the same questions that you can prepare for before calling. You should be able to say what happened, where it happened and how many are involved. When describing, you should limit yourself to brief succinct representations so as not to waste time unnecessarily.

In any case, it is important not to forget the address and the place of residence. If the information is not complete and you hang up the phone immediately, no ambulance can move out.
During the entire situation, one should keep calm and calmly persuade the injured.

Regularly one should observe the vital parameters. These include the pulse and breathing. If either or both of them are lost, begin cardiovascular resuscitation. If breathing is present and pulse palpable, but the patient is unconscious, he should be placed in stable lateral position to prevent the tongue from obstructing the airway. Even if it is burns, scalds or cuts, the vital signs should be checked. Before the arrival of the emergency doctor, the front door should be unlocked. If necessary, a second assistant should be assigned to receive the ambulance on the street.


If someone stops breathing, he must be resuscitated.

Mostly, only children are affected by this type of domestic emergency. However, with up to 4, 500 children in Germany per year, this is a relatively frequent domestic accident. The cause is usually unattended children who play mostly at the garden pond, fall into it and without the parents notice something disappear under water. Often a lot of time passes before the parents inspect the garden pond in search of the children.

The child must be pulled out of the water immediately and the vital signs monitored. This includes checking the breathing and the heartbeat. Corresponding resuscitation measures must be initiated immediately. An emergency doctor should be informed immediately. If the child resuscitates, the patient is admitted to a hospital for surveillance.


With 400-800 cases in Germany every year, domestic emergencies caused by ingestion are more rare but by no means impossible. Mostly, when eating and swallowing large bites, there are airway or esophageal linings. If the esophagus is completely obstructed, pressure on the vagus nerve supplying the heart may result in sudden heart failure (Bolustod). The patient will collapse immediately in this case. If the airway is obstructed, he will cough, choke and try to get the bite out of his throat. With the so-called Heimlich handle, in which the first responder standing behind the patient, embrace him from behind and both arms together under the diaphragm should perform jerky upward movements, can be tried with the generated overpressure to bring out the bite.

Domestic emergencies through kitchen appliances


Often there are cuts in the kitchen.

Also in the household, injuries (domestic emergencies) can occur, which can be caused by the sometimes very sharp and pointed kitchen appliances. So many very sharp kitchen appliances are still electrically operated today, which can not make an immediate stop. Often there are cuts to kitchen knives, bread slicers or electric cutting knives. In very extreme cases, there are even separations of corresponding limbs.


It is important to first issue the appropriate kitchen appliance or to remove yourself from the danger zone. Thereafter, a bleeding should be stopped in case of cuts. This should always be done with sterile conditions from the first aid. For venous bleeding usually a fixed pressure is sufficient for a few minutes. Under certain circumstances, but still sewing is necessary, which should then be carried out in the nearest hospital.

In the case of splitting arterial bleeding, a pressure dressing should be applied. This is divided into a sterile pad directly on the wound, then a solid pressure-triggering object, and a bandage attached to it, which fixes everything. An emergency physician is to be informed in case of arterial bleeding.

When severing limbs should always be an emergency doctor to understand. The severed part of the body must be lifted and cooled until the emergency doctor arrives. For all injuries, it should be checked whether there is a corresponding tetanus vaccine. Venous hemorrhages, which can be breastfed but can not be healed, should also be examined by a general practitioner, since it may be necessary to suture the wound.

In the kitchen, but also in gardening, finger injuries are common. Depending on the extent of the injury, the finger may no longer be worth preserving and must be amputated.

current accident


Power accidents can lead to cardiac arrhythmias.

Especially with smaller children, accidents may occur from time to time due to electrical contact. In spite of all safety measures at power sources and sockets, it can always happen that a child comes into contact with electricity. Most of the time the children are scared, pulling back their hands, starting to cry or scream.


First, the child should be calmed and any possible injuries at the point of entry should be investigated. You should also feel the pulse of the child right after that and some time later. In some cases, convulsions associated with electrical contact also occur in adults. As a result, the patient remains in close contact with the power source and does not dissociate from it. In this case, a second-aid should immediately remove the fuse and pull the patient away from the power source. In this case, an emergency doctor should be called as soon as possible, as these types of electrical accidents can lead to dangerous cardiac arrhythmias and cardiac arrest. The risk of electrical accidents is thus in burns from some severe grades to cardiac arrest and death.



Falls are the most common cause of domestic emergencies.

Falls are one of the most common injuries in a domestic environment that is an emergency. Especially the elderly are very vulnerable to falls. They come about out of carelessness or self-esteem, take place mainly on stairs or ladders. Often, those affected can no longer call the cause of the fall. In some cases, those affected lose their balance, slip or become unconscious.

This is to be inquired in the investigation in any case, since a loss of consciousness could be a seizure or a circulatory disorder to cause. The risk of falls in uncontrolled falling on edged, hard or sharp objects or surfaces. If unconsciousness has preceded, the patients are no longer able to adequately intercept or protect important body regions, such as the head. In this case, it comes to hard uncontrolled impact, with some very serious injuries. Other falls can be mildly accompanied by sprains, ligament strains or bone fractures. One of the most dreaded falls is the fall of old people with resulting femoral neck fracture, as it can often lead to complications in the hospital care.


After falls of unclear cause, a doctor should always be consulted or an emergency doctor should be called. The situation is difficult for lone people who have suffered a fracture or injury due to a fall. These should try to get a phone to alert the ambulance. If this is not possible, try to call the neighbors by loud call. It makes sense to participate in one of the numerous surveillance systems in old age, where you can immediately call for help by pressing a button.

The treatment of the casualty depends on the nature of the fall, the condition of the patient and the injuries. If the head is involved, computerized tomography ( CT ) is likely to be performed to rule out bleeding in the brain. If mainly bones are involved, an X-ray of the corresponding area will be sufficient. Shortened and turned out thighs always speak for a femoral neck fracture, which must be surgically treated. If the patient does not remember the course of the accident, you should look for a circulatory disorder of the carotid arteries (with ultrasound) or a cardiac arrhythmia (with ECG). In very many cases, unconsciousness resulting in a fall is caused by a sudden onset of cardiac arrhythmia.

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