Practice Scenarios




The vast majority of people who have successfully completed a CPR course, will tell you that after a very short while, they feel quite unprepared to respond to a critical event such as sudden cardiac arrest.  Since one is most likely to end up performing CPR on a loved one, the stakes of keeping one’s skills sharp are that much higher. 

Our certifications are good for two years.  During that time, students are welcome to sit in, for free, on any of our classes.  An easier way to stay sharp, and it’s so easy to do, is to run scenarios.  These are simply day dreams that you can imagine while relaxing, or performing most mundane tasks.  Simply imagine a realistic scenario where someone is experiencing a medical emergency.  While envisioning yourself in the scene, do your best to recall what you would do first, second, third, and so on.  If at some point you become unsure, simply check the literature provided during class, and run the scenario again.   Our experience in the fire service has convinced us that this simple exercise, is an invaluable tool in regards to emergency preparedness.

The following scenarios were developed for those taking our Wilderness First Aid Course, where they might find themselves far from definitive care, while having to assess and respond to a medical emergency in the wilderness.  As you look through these scenarios, ask yourself if you would remember to ask the important questions that go along with the acronym “SAMPLE”.  This acronym is taught during our Wilderness First Aid Course, which is simple, and utilized by First Responders, Paramedics, and ER Doctors when assessing the same patient.

Scenario #1

 Description of Incident: 34 year old male gets stung by a bee while hiking. His face is swollen and he has red marks on his arm, difficulty breathing, tightness in chest, and tripod position.

Time from definitive care: 2 hours.

Number of people in your party: 2
Chief complaint: Difficulty breathing, worsening, tightness in chest and throat. Only able to give two word responses.

General Impression:

ABCD’S: Intact
Skin: Red, dry
Response: Altered/Agitated

Medical History
Signs & Symptoms: Swollen Face, difficulty breathing, tightness in chest and throat.
Allergies: Bees
Medication: Epi-Pen
Past History: Hospitalized for bee sting 5 years ago.
Last oral intake: 1 hour ago, ham sandwich & one liter of water
Events prior: felt fine while hiking

Assessment?  Treatment?  Evacuate or initiate rescue?


 Scenario #2

Description of Incident: A 32 year old female is riding her bike downhill. Not witnessed, she loses control of her bike and falls down hard, possibly hitting boulders sustaining lots of soft body tissue injuries with different degrees of bleeding. Injury to right arm, possibly broken.

Time from definitive care: 3 hrs.

Number of people in your party: 4
Chief complaint: bleeding and in pain, right arm hurts

General Impression:
ABCD’S: Intact
Skin Temp: cool, moist, pale
Response: Altered – A & O by 2 Knows name and where she is, but no recollection of incident.

Medical History
Signs & Symptoms: Stings and soft tissue injury with bleeding, injury to right arm.
Allergies: N/A
Medication: N/A
Past History: N/A
Last oral intake: 20 Minutes  Two strips of beef jerky & 1 pint of Gatorade
Events prior: felt fine

Assessment?  Treatment?  Evacuate or initiate rescue?


Scenario #3

Description of Incident: A 58 year old male is splitting kindling with hatchet and severs index and middle fingers of left hand.

Chief complaint: Extreme pain to left hand.

Time from definitive care: ½ hour

General Impression:
ABCD’S: Intact
Response: A & O by 4

Time from definitive care: 1 hour.  Number in party: 4

Medical History
Signs & Symptoms: Skin: diaphoretic, pale
Allergies: N/A
Medication: Simvastatin for high cholesterol
Past History: N/A

Last oral intake: 30 minutes ago, Ham sandwich and glass of milk
Events prior: felt suddenly faint prior to hitting hand with ax

Treatment?  Evacuate or initiate rescue?


Scenario #4

Description of Incident: Conscious, but unresponsive 45 year old male found lying under a tree. Daughter states that they sat down to rest, when he became unresponsive.

Chief complaint: None

General Impression:
ABCD’S: Intact
Skin: pink & dry (normal)
Response: Responds physically to requests, but not verbally.

Medical History
Signs & Symptoms: Spacey
Allergies: N/A
Medication: Lisinopril-hctz
Past History: High blood pressure

Last oral intake: 15 minutes prior, ½ liter of water.
Events prior: Patient was active and behaving normally while hiking.

Assessment?  Treatment?  Evacuate or initiate rescue?

Available treatment options:  Basic first aid supplies,  Liquid Benadryl,  Epi-pen, 320 mg. Aspirin

Other Considerations:  No cell service, No PLB.