Want to watch this video? Sign up for the course here. Or enter your email below to watch one free video.

Unlock This Video Now for FREE

This video is normally available to paying customers.
You may unlock this video for FREE. Enter your email address for instant access AND to receive ongoing updates and special discounts related to this topic.



So, attaching a patient to the spinal board or backboard. There are a number of different ways of doing it, but the most common way is a cross method with the straps across the chest and then the final one across the legs, finishing off always with the head blocks at the top. So we attach the straps to the board and we cross the patient's body on an angle, across and across. So we have got the shoulders completely controlled. We locate the two straps and we pull up gently. We locate the opposite strap and again, once it's locked in, we now have a cross going over the chest and over the patient's chest. Now it is important at this point to get the patient to take a deep breath in, if we do not get the patient to take a deep breath in where possible when we pull the straps up, we restrict the breathing. If we take a deep breath in, when they breathe out, it allows enough movement to allow comfortable breathing from the patient. So take a deep breath in for me. And then we adjust the straps uptightly. Okay, breathe out for me and we have now allowed enough slack to allow the patient to breathe. Okay, so they do not want to be so tight that they restrict breathing. They are just there to fix the upper torso to the board itself.

We then move down and fit the final strap across the legs and again, pull nice and tight so the patient is fixed solidly to the board. Leave the arms out. The reason we leave the arms out, if the patient is conscious, is because people don't like having their arms fixed. What you want to do then is to get the patient to hold that hand with the opposite hand for me and keep the hands out of the way. Give them something to hold on to, a handbag, purse or just hold their hands together. If the patient is unconscious, then it is quite often better to actually strap the hands in to aid when we come to move the patient. But if they are conscious, they will hold their own hands and it keeps them out of the way.

Once the torso is fixed and tightly strapped down to the board, we then move to the head end. The head end, as I said is always the last bit to be fixed. With the hands holding C spine all the time we have been doing the straps, they are out of the way and the blocks are then inserted. You will notice there is an angled side and a flat side. The flat side goes to the head, the angled side goes on the outside and both blocks are applied at the same time, snugly to the side of the head to keep the head in position and velcroed down. Once the velcro is placed and fixed in place, we then apply the straps. And it is not until the straps are applied that we can release the pressure. We go for the second loop down, we loop through and come back on itself. And we do the same on the opposite side.

We then come underneath the chin with the second strap. You can now let go of the chin for me and again we go to the second loop up, velcro and the second loop and velcro again. Okay, you can let go completely now. So what we are gonna do now is tighten the straps and there is a proper way to tighten the straps. If we just velcro one side and pull the other, it rotates the head, it rolls the head. So what you should do is you should grab both straps with the chin piece centre of the chin, you should put your thumbs onto the head blocks, push down with your thumbs and pull the pressure directly down. That way you get an even pull. The same with the head. And once the blocks are on tight, the patient is now safe to move. If this patient vomits, if this patient has any airway problems, we must be prepared to roll or use suction because the airway now is totally in our hands. If they vomit, they can not move their head to clear their airway. So we have to be able to do that for them, which means postural drainage on the board or using suction very quickly.

  • IPOSi Unit three LO1.3, 1.4 & 2.2