How to make a cuff and collar shoulder sling

Written by don davis
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How to make a cuff and collar shoulder sling
A girl wears a cuff and collar sling. (Jupiterimages/Polka Dot/Getty Images)

There are three kinds of slings, which support and immobilise an injured part of the body to relieve pain and promote healing. Large arm slings are used for rib fractures and forearm fractures. Triangular slings are used with fractured collar bones and other shoulder injuries. Collar and cuff slings support one wrist and are used to relieve pressure on an injured elbow. Many commercial versions of collar and cuff slings are sold, but you can make your own. This sling is often called a clove hitch sling because of the knot traditionally used to tie it.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Long bandage

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  1. 1

    Extend the casualty's hand toward the shoulder on the uninjured side.

  2. 2

    Unroll a 1.5 m (60 inch) long, heavy-duty cotton bandage. Fold the bandage in half lengthwise.

  3. 3

    Tie a loose clove hitch in the middle of the length of bandage. A clove hitch is a knot comprised of two loops, or half hitches. Make one loop around the casualty's wrist on the injured side and tuck that end of the bandage through the loop clockwise, as children tie simple knots or cowboys tie horses to posts. Make the other loop around the wrist and tuck that end of the bandage through the loop counterclockwise.

  4. 4

    Gently pull the ends of the bandage to tighten the clove hitch over the casualty's wrist.

  5. 5

    Extend one end of the bandage around the casualty's neck. Tie the two ends of the bandage in the hollow just above the collarbone, using any knot that will not slip. Tie the ends at a point where the casualty's wrist will be supported in the middle of the torso. The distance between the knot near the collarbone and the casualty's wrist will be different for tall and short people.

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