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Old 01-04-2017, 01:29 PM
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Do soldiers still have morphine in their personall first aid kits?

Hello Everyone,

Reading about WWII it appears that it was common for combat soldiers to carry self injectable morphine in their personal first aid kits. Do individual soldiers still carry pain medication?
Old 01-04-2017, 01:33 PM
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No. In 27 years in the army I never saw this.
Old 01-04-2017, 01:37 PM
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It was replaced with a note reminding the users that, "What's good for M & M Enterprises is good for the country. -- Milo Minderbinder."
Old 01-04-2017, 02:28 PM
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Apparently British soldiers carry morphine in some circumstances, but US soldiers don't. https://ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24566610
Old 01-04-2017, 02:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by obbn View Post
Reading about WWII it appears that it was common for combat soldiers to carry self injectable morphine in their personal first aid kits. Do individual soldiers still carry pain medication?
Just a quick look but I can't see anything with regards to US troops that personal first aid kits included morphine even then. Medics carried it so it was still commonly available and used at unit level by medical personnel. Think more at the EMT level and possible to administer without a doctor's order, even by radio.

Are you sure the level of care you were seeing was administering morphine at the individual/first aid level instead of at that level? Do you know which military we're talking about since there are differences between nations like Pantastic's link points out.
Old 01-04-2017, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by 74westy View Post
It was replaced with a note reminding the users that, "What's good for M & M Enterprises is good for the country. -- Milo Minderbinder."
I hear cotton's gluten-free and non-GMO.
Old 01-04-2017, 03:11 PM
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Originally Posted by DinoR View Post
Just a quick look but I can't see anything with regards to US troops that personal first aid kits included morphine even then. Medics carried it so it was still commonly available and used at unit level by medical personnel. Think more at the EMT level and possible to administer without a doctor's order, even by radio.

Are you sure the level of care you were seeing was administering morphine at the individual/first aid level instead of at that level? Do you know which military we're talking about since there are differences between nations like Pantastic's link points out.
Well, in the documentary Saving Private Ryan, there was the scene where the squad combine their morphine ampules to euthanize the soon-to-be-dead Wade. Mr Spielberg wouldn't lie to us, would he?
Old 01-04-2017, 03:26 PM
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I talked to a veteran friend who was in Iraq a few years ago. He said that Combat Medics carried it where he was stationed, but he did say that some special forces members were issued it during certain assignments.
He also said that when it was issued, it was only temporary and you had to return it or have a documented need to use it while on assignment. If you didn't have a valid reason for using it, there was a ton of consequences and paperwork.
Old 01-04-2017, 03:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Just Asking Questions View Post
Well, in the documentary Saving Private Ryan, there was the scene where the squad combine their morphine ampules to euthanize the soon-to-be-dead Wade. Mr Spielberg wouldn't lie to us, would he?
Well he is part of Hollywood so getting things wrong from sheer ignorance is a distinct possibility even for movies that really make an effort for realism. There's also intentionally modifying small things to drive the story and for dramatic effect...don't call it lying.

Taking a quick look at the scene I don't see anything that clearly supports your description of the scene anyway. Wade was a medic. He would have been carrying morphine based on his duties not based on it being issued as part of every Soldier's individual equipment. They administer an overdose. In the jumble of the scene it's not clear to me whether they pulled the drugs from their equipment versus Wade's equipment. It's just there and being injected.
Old 01-04-2017, 03:50 PM
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In about a decade of time in the Air Force, I never saw morphine in an Individual First Aid Kit (IFAK). The kit did contain various bandages and dressings, tourniquets, some ibuprofen and alcohol wipes, a tube of chap stick, and probably a few other odds and ends. If we were expected to face chemical or biological threats, we would also be issued some medical stuff like Atropine autoinjectors (that stuff will jump start your heart if it's not working, or give you a heart attack if it is working, but a heart attack is better than dying from the effects of nerve toxin) and various other stuff, but none of it was pain killers, just antidotes for various nasty things.

As I understand it, any such antidote kits were also considered accountable items and had to be signed out and signed back in if unused. I'm not sure why anyone would use atropine unless they would literally die otherwise, though.
Old 01-04-2017, 03:52 PM
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They also gather it from the 101st in Band of Brothers. I think that some Elite forces, going behind lines, were issued it.

But not line troops. My dad had sulfa powder and quinine in WWII in New Guinea.

He did say that many US soldiers carried a better equipped first aid kit than "Jap" Medics did.

Last edited by DrDeth; 01-04-2017 at 03:53 PM.
Old 01-04-2017, 05:39 PM
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Originally Posted by DrDeth View Post
They also gather it from the 101st in Band of Brothers. I think that some Elite forces, going behind lines, were issued it.

But not line troops. My dad had sulfa powder and quinine in WWII in New Guinea.

He did say that many US soldiers carried a better equipped first aid kit than "Jap" Medics did.
I was a kid at the end of WWII Every GI coming back had amongst his yarns the story about the guy who always gargled and brushed his teeth with sulfa after returning from leave.
Old 01-04-2017, 06:00 PM
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Originally Posted by DrDeth View Post
They also gather it from the 101st in Band of Brothers. I think that some Elite forces, going behind lines, were issued it.

But not line troops. My dad had sulfa powder and quinine in WWII in New Guinea.

He did say that many US soldiers carried a better equipped first aid kit than "Jap" Medics did.
Ah, here ya go:

https://med-dept.com/medical-kit...hine-tartrate/


Illustration showing Item No. 9775700; Morphine Tartrate, 1 Tube, with different designs of outer box. The hard fibreboard tube was used to protect the Syrette in certain types of First-Aid Kits (notably the Parachute First-Aid Packet – Item No. 9778500).
Squibb produced a number of packages of their Morphine Syrette. The most popular of these was without a doubt Item No. 9115700 – Morphine Tartrate, 1 Tube. This was the individual tube of Morphine which could be found inside every Parachutist’s First-Aid Packet. This unit consisted of a small, light yellow and red printed box, inside which was contained the Syrette itself, i.e. a collapsible tube with a sterile needle.



So Airborne. Rangers are a maybe.
Old 01-04-2017, 06:56 PM
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Airborne makes sense - the chance of being separated from the unit medic being very much higher than for line infantry.
Old 01-04-2017, 08:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Raguleader View Post
In about a decade of time in the Air Force, I never saw morphine in an Individual First Aid Kit (IFAK). The kit did contain various bandages and dressings, tourniquets, some ibuprofen and alcohol wipes, a tube of chap stick, and probably a few other odds and ends. If we were expected to face chemical or biological threats, we would also be issued some medical stuff like Atropine autoinjectors (that stuff will jump start your heart if it's not working, or give you a heart attack if it is working, but a heart attack is better than dying from the effects of nerve toxin) and various other stuff, but none of it was pain killers, just antidotes for various nasty things.

As I understand it, any such antidote kits were also considered accountable items and had to be signed out and signed back in if unused. I'm not sure why anyone would use atropine unless they would literally die otherwise, though.
Survival Kit contents check. In them you will find: one 45 caliber automatic, two boxes of ammunition, four days concentrated emergency rations, one drug issue containing antibiotics, morphine, vitamin pills, pep pills, sleeping pills, tranquilizer pills, one miniature combination Rooshan phrase book and Bible, one hundred dollars in rubles, one hundred dollars in gold, nine packs of chewing gum, one issue of prophylactics, three lipsticks, three pair of nylon stockings.
Old 01-04-2017, 09:03 PM
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So 3 lipsticks & 3 pairs of nylon stockings, but they expected you to use the same condom 6 times?
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Old 01-04-2017, 09:11 PM
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Originally Posted by alphaboi867 View Post
So 3 lipsticks & 3 pairs of nylon stockings, but they expected you to use the same condom 6 times?
I believe the lipsticks and nylons were meant to be traded to the locals for whatever you might need. Or for dressing up for your big dance number for Hitler.
Old 01-05-2017, 06:44 AM
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Originally Posted by snfaulkner View Post
Survival Kit contents check. In them you will find: one 45 caliber automatic, two boxes of ammunition, four days concentrated emergency rations, one drug issue containing antibiotics, morphine, vitamin pills, pep pills, sleeping pills, tranquilizer pills, one miniature combination Rooshan phrase book and Bible, one hundred dollars in rubles, one hundred dollars in gold, nine packs of chewing gum, one issue of prophylactics, three lipsticks, three pair of nylon stockings.
Shoot, a fella' could have a pretty good weekend in Vegas with all that stuff.
Old 01-05-2017, 08:13 AM
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I've been told by medics that they don't really like to use morphine in the field. It may sound callous, but pain is data, and a soldier who can't feel his wounds is a soldier who might not know how severely he's injured. If you're screaming that your leg hurts, there's a better chance someone will treat your leg.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Just Asking Questions View Post
Well, in the documentary Saving Private Ryan, there was the scene where the squad combine their morphine ampules to euthanize the soon-to-be-dead Wade. Mr Spielberg wouldn't lie to us, would he?
Veteran soldiers learn to pick up "spares" of just about everything, including stuff they weren't issued in the first place. Swiping and scavenging are an ordinary part of military life, and the chaos of a shooting war makes picking stuff up much easier. If I were there, I'd find a way to get myself some morphine too, just in case.
Old 01-05-2017, 08:23 AM
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Originally Posted by snfaulkner View Post
I believe the lipsticks and nylons were meant to be traded to the locals for whatever you might need. Or for dressing up for your big dance number for Hitler.

Say Babushka, sorry that I dropped a couple of big nukes on Novosibirsk but can I have some bread? Here I'll trade you nylon stockings for it....... my missus loves this stuff.
Old 01-05-2017, 08:32 AM
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Originally Posted by AK84 View Post

Say Babushka, sorry that I dropped a couple of big nukes on Novosibirsk but can I have some bread? Here I'll trade you nylon stockings for it....... my missus loves this stuff.
Bear in mind that most places that Americans fought in Europe were at least nominally friendly to the U.S. - France, Belgium, the Netherlands. Hell, I bet even Italian women would have been happy for some lipstick.
Old 01-05-2017, 08:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Alessan View Post
Bear in mind that most places that Americans fought in Europe were at least nominally friendly to the U.S. - France, Belgium, the Netherlands. Hell, I bet even Italian women would have been happy for some lipstick.
The survival kit contents check is from Dr Strangelove, when USSR was the enemy.

But still, just how well disposed to you will the fine ladies of the city you have just bombed?
Old 01-05-2017, 08:40 AM
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Depends if the bombing has driven out the Germans.

Plus, civilians don't survive a war by holding grudges, they do it by getting what they can. If someone offers them something, they take it.
Old 01-05-2017, 09:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Baron Greenback View Post
Airborne makes sense - the chance of being separated from the unit medic being very much higher than for line infantry.
Also, a much higher chance of getting a broken bone from a bad landing but still needing to move while separated from the medic.

Apparently the US has been moving away from morphine injection to a fenatyl 'lollipop' for field medics: http://telegraph.co.uk/news/worl...-morphine.html
Old 01-05-2017, 09:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Pantastic View Post
Also, a much higher chance of getting a broken bone from a bad landing but still needing to move while separated from the medic.
Broken bones is the one injury that medics regularly use morphine for - there's generally nothing you can do until they get to a hospital, so you might as well make getting there less painful.
Old 01-05-2017, 12:18 PM
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Originally Posted by AK84 View Post
The survival kit contents check is from Dr Strangelove, when USSR was the enemy.

But still, just how well disposed to you will the fine ladies of the city you have just bombed?
Ever so slightly more disposed once I offer them hundreds of dollars in rubles, gold, and ladies' accessories than they would have been if I could only offer them a combat knife and a survival rifle?

Historically, the kits would be customized to a degree based on what areas the planes would be flying over. Depending on their planned routes, they might have "blood chits" or phrase guides in languages such as Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Persian, Arabic, etc.

Plus, for a fight against the USSR, they'd logically also try to have ways to appeal to various non-Russian satellite states that might be relatively friendly to westerners to varying degrees, such as Poles or Germans. Plus plus, who knows if the random Russians you run into in the middle of the Eurasian outback would give a hoot about the Soviet government? I honestly don't know what the popular opinion was throughout Russia during the Cold War, but it's still better to offer a carrot than nothing.
Old 01-05-2017, 02:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Raguleader View Post
Ever so slightly more disposed once I offer them hundreds of dollars in rubles, gold, and ladies' accessories than they would have been if I could only offer them a combat knife and a survival rifle?

Historically, the kits would be customized to a degree based on what areas the planes would be flying over. Depending on their planned routes, they might have "blood chits" or phrase guides in languages such as Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Persian, Arabic, etc.

Plus, for a fight against the USSR, they'd logically also try to have ways to appeal to various non-Russian satellite states that might be relatively friendly to westerners to varying degrees, such as Poles or Germans. Plus plus, who knows if the random Russians you run into in the middle of the Eurasian outback would give a hoot about the Soviet government? I honestly don't know what the popular opinion was throughout Russia during the Cold War, but it's still better to offer a carrot than nothing.
Dr. Strangelove was a comedy.
Old 01-05-2017, 03:21 PM
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Also IIRC the bombers were flying over the Artic so the only between us and the USSR was Canada.

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Old 01-05-2017, 03:25 PM
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Originally Posted by 74westy View Post
Dr. Strangelove was a comedy.
A black comedy indeed. The kit is explained as a parody referencing many items that many soldiers in WWII found very useful to bribe people, but most importantly for the sexual undertones of the movie (Mistresses, the ratio of females to men in the underground shelters proposed by Dr. Strangelove, the lovely music while planes couple in the opening credits, etc) such a kit assumes a chaotic economy and a loss of a power base as a result of the war in Russia; so, better chances to bribe people or to expect Russian women to offer themselves with little bribes to the Americans if they had become the winners just as it happened to many allied troops in Europe and other parts of the world that suffered a lot of shortages during the war.

Of course the irony and humor of the scene is expected to come to the viewers by realizing later that the coming war was not going to be like WWII, and most if not all those items would be useless when everything is obliterated, at least in WWII many people would survive that then could be convinced or bribed to go along with the conquerors.

Last edited by GIGObuster; 01-05-2017 at 03:25 PM.
Old 01-06-2017, 01:07 AM
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Shoot, a fella' could have a pretty good weekend in Vegas with all that stuff.
Trivia note: Lip-reading you can see that Slim Pickens originally said 'Dallas', not 'Vegas.'
Old 01-06-2017, 06:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Raguleader View Post
Ever so slightly more disposed once I offer them hundreds of dollars in rubles, gold, and ladies' accessories than they would have been if I could only offer them a combat knife and a survival rifle?
You can get far more with a kind word and a gun than you can with just a gun.
Old 01-07-2017, 08:33 PM
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A good friend just returned from an overseas deployment. He did have an extensive medical kit, including fentanyl. His deployment was to a VERY remote location, with no access to medical care, so they sent him with everything they could.
Old 01-07-2017, 10:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Poysyn View Post
A good friend just returned from an overseas deployment. He did have an extensive medical kit, including fentanyl. His deployment was to a VERY remote location, with no access to medical care, so they sent him with everything they could.
I'm actually shocked the military uses Fentynal instead of morphine or something line demoral. Fentynal is generally only given to opiod tolerant individuals as the risk of a fatal overdose is quite high in non-tolerant people. It must be a tiny amount of Fentynal.
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