Blood Sucking Chest Wound? No problem. – QuikClot and Celox

26 September, 2011

So, I have a few issues with most pre-packaged first aid kits. Principle among those issues is that they’re too often filled with fixes for minor, ignorable issues and contain nothing for the real emergencies. Case in point: Get a serious cut – pick your favorite major artery – and see how far the over-the-counter kit one gets from Target or Wal-mart gets you. But fortunately, there are products you and add to any kit easily that will pick up the major-wound slack.

QuikClot (spelling is correct) is my favorite of these. It’s a product that combines a bandaging kit with a hemostatic agent that causes even the most severe bleeds to be stopped cold. They take very little effort and essentially no training and can literally be a life saver.


Why is this stuff great?

  • It’s a complete, self-contained package. Very compact, light.
  • Pretty inexpensive. ($11 for the version shown here)
  • Insanely effective
  • Easy to use. Requires almost no training or preparation
  • It’s not a drug – there’s no active agent, etc. No chance for allergic reaction or medical contraindications.
What’s not so great?
  • One pack = One use. Don’t screw up applying it, because you’ll need a second package if you need to redo. Also, if you have to treat more than one wound? Better have more than one pack. No, you can reuse these. Ever.
  • It’s not very “lazy”: It’s not *that* cheap, nor can you get it just anywhere.
  • While it’s not a risk in the current generation, the older models did have side-effects. The powder would cause non-trivial burns. Still, “burnt” is better than “bled out”, and as noted the *current* models do not have this issue.
  • Must be used quickly. This won’t replace the blood that’s already been lost, so if you’re too slow in applying shock (and death) can still be a serious issue.
  • It’s not magic. Don’t expect to apply one of these on a life-threatening wound and be able to just walk away like it was a paper cut.

Since the ingredients all inactive, there’s no restrictions/requirements for storage in terms of heat/cold (even in extreme temperature). The manufacturer recommends avoiding extended periods in direct sunlight, and of course, don’t open the package until you need to use it (to maintain the sterileness). They also suggest that an inventory should be rotated every three years.

An alternative to QuikClot is Celox’s line of product. The packaging is roughly the same but the usage is a little different. The specific technology is a little different, so there are some additional handling limitations (i’m hearing that the shelf life is much shorter). But from the standpoint of effectiveness, I’d be happy to see either brand in a kit.

Here’s a video of one of the earlier generations of the QuikClot product being tested on a pig. It’s a pretty dramatic demonstration of just how effective this stuff can be – but be warned, this is pretty graphic video. Not for the all eyes.



This is a single purpose item, but a darn fine single purpose. Good price, compact. Get one for each of your kits. One in the car, one in the office desk. Every one should have one of these.


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One Response to Blood Sucking Chest Wound? No problem. – QuikClot and Celox

  1. 27 September, 2011 at 8:35 am

    I love this stuff. There is a packet sitting in my first aid “big bag” right now. I hope I NEVER have to use it.

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