April 15, 2013, Boston Marathon Bombing
At the Boston Marathon in 2013, two pressure cooker IEDs were detonated resulting in three fatalities, 264 casualties, and three triple amputees. Although 27 “improvised tourniquets” were placed at the point of injury, none had a windlass or rod to generate the mechanical advantage necessary to truly make them tourniquets.
Using an even more minimalistic technique than our improvised pantleg tourniquet, a pair of running shorts and shoe can be used to make an effective improvised tourniquet. Thanks to our friend Chris Röhrich, a German Special Forces Medic who came up with the idea, and we show it works with Doppler Ultrasound.
Of course, we’d always prefer to use proven, commercially available equipment, but we believe it’s important to have a robust plan, including an alternate, contingency, and emergency plan.