This guide is aiming to teach you basics of medical care in Arma 3 with ACE3 Advanced Medical for a non-medical personnel.
You will find recommended medical loadouts, how to use medical menu, medical procedure and some tips.
Note: This guide is valid for ACE version 3.12.6, not for the Medical Rewrite!
As a non-medic (from riflemen to asset crews) you're limited to following supplies at spawn:
- 4x Bandage (of any type)
- 1x Morphine Autoinjector
- 1x Epinephrine Autoinjector
- 1x Tourniquet (CAT)
- 1x SAM Splint
You can also bring IV bags if medic asks to crossload them across the squad, however you will not be able to use them yourself.
Surgical Kit and Personal Aid Kit are Medic only items and therefore are useless to you. Don't ever take them from a live medic!
That said, this limit only applies for spawn (and respawn). In the mission you can take medical supplies from fallen enemies and friendlies.
There are 4 types of bandages:
- Bandage (Basic)
- Bandage (Elastic)
- Basic Field Dressing (QuikClot)
- Packing Bandage
As a non-medic the two most interesting types are QuikClot and Packing Bandages. The reason is that because two most common injuries are Velocity Wounds and Avulsions. If you were to take Elastic Bandages and didn't have access to a medic within roughly 1-3 minutes the bandage would "reopen" leading to you bleeding again.
Packing Bandages, while having same change to reopen as Elastics will reopen in 10 times the time - both minimum and maximum.
You can learn more about bandages and wounds in Medical Training guides.
Enabling Medical Menu
To learn how to enable medical menu, check out the guide on Rebinds and Addon Settings, section Medical Menu:
Using Medical Menu
The name of the patient in top left corner is fairly self explanatory, but nonetheless it's important. Sometimes the menu open for yourself when you want to treat other. Other time you squished in one place so much that you want to treat yourself, but only get medical menu of others.
How to switch will be described later too.
The Overview provides quick info like that the person is bleeding and in pain.
The figurine is clickable and you can switch between different body parts that way: Head, Torso, Left/Right Arms and Left/Right Legs.
Further, the colour of the limb depends on it's state:
White: No wounds present
- Limbs can still be broken
- BUG: When a bruise is present it might override limb to be white instead of blue
- Blue: Wounds are bandaged
- Red: Wounds are open
The colour also changes intensity based on... intensity of wounds. More serious wounds will produce deeper red, while minor scratches will barely change the hue at all.
Now about the buttons in the left side:
- (1) Triage card - history of treatment
- (2) Diagnose - checking pulse, blood pressure, limbs, responsiveness
- (3) Bandages and Fractures - treating wounds
- (4) Medication - morphine, epinephrine
- (5) Airway management - not in use
- (6) Advanced treatment - only for medics
- (7) Drag/Carry - dragging and carrying
- (8) Toggle Self - switching between you and others
The triage card just shows history of treatment. It's useful mostly for medics to see what you did before they take over, so that they don't OD you with drugs for example.
On the image below I applied Tourniquet 2 minutes ago and Morphine just before switching over to Triage Card:
The diagnose tab allows you to check pulse, blood pressure, response and limbs.
Keep in mind that for the first two it matters where on the figurine you are! Always check pulse and blood pressure on Torso or Head to avoid any chance of checking on tourniqueted limb. Limbs with tourniquet on will produce no heart rate, which is where inexperienced people pronounced unconscious people as dead.
Once you do check pulse and others it will appear on your screen and in bottom right in Quick View part of the Medical Menu with the exception of Limb Analysis which shows up only as a popup.
Bandages and Fractures
The Bandages and Fractures part of the menu allow you to treat wounds. It will show mix of your and your patient's medical supplies and it will first take them from the patient. So keep that in mind.
You commence treatment by selecting the injured part of the body you want to treat and then selecting desired treatment. For example apply tourniquet to a wounded leg and see how the symbol for tourniquet appears on the figurine.
You can also notice the wound is still red, however the Bleeding in Overview disappeared.
When you apply enough bandages to bandage all the wounds on given body part the Red will turn Blue.
To apply drugs you will need to go to the Medication part of the menu and select a limb where to inject them. Keep in mind that Tourniquets will block spread of the drugs until removed and then they enter the body. Again it will show mix of yours and the patient's injectors available.
Drag and carry allow you to trigger dragging and carrying on people who have either broken legs and/or are unconscious. You cannot drag or carry if you have broken legs yourself.
Dragging is fast to start - you just grab the person and start dragging them backwards. However dragging itself is fairly slow, therefore ideal for very short distances like around a corner from harm's way.
Carrying is slow to start - it triggers a long animation that put the carried person on your back into a fireman's carry. However once finished you will be able to move fairly fast, ignore stamina and therefore it is ideal to do in relatively safe environment where longer distances are needed - like 300 meters to evac.
Keep in mind that for both of these if you're in Combat Pace you will not be able to move. If that happens to you do not panic and double tap C to disable combat pacing.
Finally the switch works fairly simply, you click on it and it will toggle between you and whoever you're looking at while in range of medical menu.
If you get hit and stay conscious (or wake up after the initial spike of pain) the procedure of treatment is as follows:
- Finish the engagement and find cover. If you immediately start bandaging yourself you're likely to get shot.
- Check your wounds. Might be a minor wound, might be a broken leg. Know what you're dealing with.
Call in your injury to medic.
- Announce yourself in 3rd person.
- Announce where you are.
- Announce severity of your wound.
- Announce extra conditions like broken legs (can be important for SL too).
- The announcement can sound like this: "Medic, PointForward got hit, I'm 10 meters east of actual, stable, broken leg".
- The worst thing you can announce on radio is "I'm hit." Who? Where? How bad?
- Get treatment.
Now let's say you don't have a medic for whatever reason:
- Finish the engagement and find cover.
- Check your wounds.
- Call in your injury to squad. Somebody has to cover your sector while you stabilize yourself.
- If you got hit in Torso or Head start bandaging.
- If you got hit in Leg or Arm tourniquet that limb.
- If you can get to a Medic within ~5 minutes you can just keep tourniquet on without bandaging. More that that it might be better to bandage yourself to prevent extra pain.
- If you have broken limbs, bandage up the wounds and apply SAM Splint.
- Keep an eye out on wounds reopening, especially if you're inside a vehicle like a tank.
- Try to find a medic in reasonable time frame to get fixed up properly.
Checking a body to see if a person is dead or alive
There are several ways to tell without going into medical menu: person has ragdolled (unless hit by a vehicle), they dropped their weapon or their head is moving.
The safest way is to check their Heart Rate. Always make sure you're checking heart rate on Torso or Head as they cannot be tourniqueted. Tourniquets stop blood flow and therefore pulse would be 0 on such limb.
Waking up people with drugs
There are 3 reasons why person can be unconscious:
- Excessive pain
- Low fluid volume (blood loss)
- Low heart rate
When people are in excessive pain, you can wake them up with Morphine. Do not apply when heart rate is too low!
Typical signs: In Pain, normal heart rate, normal blood pressure.
Typical cause: Getting heavy or multiple injuries, overpressure, backblast, ...
Low fluid volume (blood loss):
When people suffered excessive blood loss, they can only be helped by a medic with an IV solution (blood, saline, plasma). In some situation an epinephrine injection might wake them up, but as the heart rate goes back down to normal rate, they will fall back unconscious unless they receive an IV solution. And it will not help if the fluids are too low.
Typical signs: Low blood pressure even if not in pain and with normal heart rate.
Typical cause: Bleeding out for a while.
Low heart rate:
When people have low heart rate they can fall (or stay) unconscious. Apply epinephrine to wake them up.
Typical signs: Low heart rate even when blood pressure is normal.
Typical cause: Too much morphine (or morphine applied to already low heart rate) or being stabilized after losing blood for a while.
What NOT to do
Some things are common waste of time or resources:
- Applying morphine for minor pain. (waste of resources)
- Applying epinephrine after Morphine to get rid of the sound of your heart. (waste of valuable resources)
- Checking Heart Rate on a Tourniqueted limb. (waste of time, danger of leaving somebody behind)
- Announcing your injury over radio as "I'm hit!". (waste of time)