Electric Shock

The electric shock happens when the person comes in contact with the source of electrical energy. The electrical energy passes by the tissues of a part of the body causing shock. It can cause the person devastating damage and even death.

Depending on the time and seriousness of the shock, the injuries due to electric shock may include-

  • Skin burns
  • Burns to internal tissues
  • Electrical damage to the heart that may cause the heart to stop or beat randomly.

What causes electric shock?

Causes of electric shock can be many. Some of them are:

  • Defective electric appliances
  • Damaged or chafed cords or extension leads
  • Electrical appliances in contact with or immersed in water
  • Wrong or deteriorated household wiring
  • Knocked down power lines
  • Striking lightning

Symptoms of Electric Shock

The victim of electric shock can have a little external evident injury or may have some obvious grave burns. The typical symptoms of the electric shock can be-

  • Unconsciousness
  • Difficulty to breathe or having no breathing at all
  • Weak and inconsistent pulse or having no pulse
  • Burns or the entrance and exit burns, where the electricity entered and left the body

Burns are generally the harshest effects that happen particularly at the contact areas with the electrical source. The hands, head, and heels are the common areas of contact. More than the burns, there are other injuries possible if the person throws a clear electrical source with muscular contraction with force. There can also be a case of spine injury. The patient can also have some internal injury particularly when they experience shortness of breath, pain in chest and pain in the abdomen. Pain in hand or foot or can also indicate a possible broken bone due to electric shock.

The children can have a typical electrical mouth burn because of biting the electric cord appearing as the burn on the lip. This area gets a red or dark and charred appearance.

Care and Treatment

In case of a high voltage shock (500 volts or more), the patient must be taken at the Emergency Department of the hospital. In the low voltage shock case, you must call the doctor for the following purpose-

If it is more than five years time since your had your last tetanus booster Burns not healing fast and well Burns with mounting redness, pain or bleeding Electric shock to a pregnant woman

Exams and Tests

The basic concern is to make out if there is any evident hidden injury subsists. Injury can happen to muscles, heart, or brain or to bones or organs from being thrown from the electric source. The doctor can ask to have different tests as per the case and physical examination.

The tests for electric check are:

  • ECG
  • Blood count
  • Urine test
  • X Rays to look for fractures or dislocations
  • CT scan

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