Hazardous Marine Life

Hazardous Marine Life

Pressure Immobilization Technique

The pressure immobilization technique is a first-aid skill intended to contain venom within the bitten area and prevent it from moving into central circulation, where the venom could affect vital organs. The technique consists of pressure to prevent lymphatic drainage and immobilization to prevent venous return (blood flow back to the heart) caused by the pumping action of skeletal muscle.


Use an elastic bandage and splinting to administer proper pressure and immobilization. An inelastic cloth is not ideal because it is difficult to achieve optimal pressure.
  1. Begin bandaging a few inches above the bite site (between the bite and the heart).

  2. Wind the bandage around the limb with overlapping turns moving up the limb and then back down past the bite site.

  3. The wrap should be tight enough to administer pressure, but you should still have normal feeling, color and a palpable pulse.

  4. Use a splint or suitable substitute to immobilize the limb.

  5. If possible, hold upper extremities with a sling.