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Traction Splint


1. The hare traction splint is designed to be used on those patients
who have suffered a suspected femur fracture. Proper use can
decrease the pain and damage caused by the fracture.

II. Indications

1. Suspected femur fracture.

III. Contraindications

1. Open femur fracture.

IV. Procedural Protocols

1. Upon recognizing the injury, Rescuer One should stabilize leg in
the position found.

2. Rescuer Two will then expose the injured leg.
A. Assess neurological function distal to injury site.
B. Assess circulatory function distal to injury site.

3. Rescuer Two should prepare traction splint.
A. Position splint against uninjured leg.
B. Adjust splint to length, extending the splint so that the bend
is even with the heel of the foot.
C. Tighten locking collars.
D. Open and position the Velcro straps along the splint.
E. Release the ratchet, extending the entire length of the
traction strap.
F. Place the splint next to the injured leg.

4. Rescuer Two should apply the ankle hitch to the patient.

5. Rescuer Two should apply gentle but firm traction.

6. Rescuer One will now move the splint into position.
A. The splint should be firmly seated against the ischial

7. Rescuer One secures the pubic strap.

A. The strap is brought over the groin and high over the thigh
and secured.

8. Rescuer One attaches the ankle hitch to the traction strap.
9. The traction strap is taken in, applying mechanical traction until the
pain and muscle spasms are relieved.
A. Maintain manual traction until the mechanical traction takes
B. Traction can be stopped when the injured leg is
approximately the same length as the uninjured leg.

10. Secure the remaining Velcro straps around the leg.

11. Reevaluate all of the straps.
A. When splint is properly applied, the patient’s foot should be

12. Reassess circulatory and neurological function distal to injury site.
A. Compare to original findings and note any changes.

13. Transport patient on firm surface, such as a long spine board, so
that the splint is supported.

V. Notes

1. If the patient is determined to be unstable, do not waste time
applying the traction splint. Splint the injured leg against the
uninjured leg to expedite transport.

2. Continue to monitor patient’s vital signs during transport.

3. Continue to reassess circulatory and neurological function distal to
injury site.
A. Compare to original findings and note any changes.

4. If the hospital has not removed the splint prior to departing, request
the hospital staff to notify the EMS Supervisor once the splint is
removed. It should be picked up as soon as possible and placed
back on the unit

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