Illness and injury associated with sport and physical activities may occur in the school setting. Although most sport-related illness and injury in students are considered minor emergencies, life- and limb-threatening illnesses or injuries may occur, such as sudden cardiac arrest, heat stroke, status asthmaticus, catastrophic brain or cervical spine injuries, hypoglycemia, blunt chest/abdominal injuries, or extremity fractures requiring surgery. It is important for the school nurse to recognize potential life- and limb-threatening emergencies associated with sport and physical activity, to initiate stabilization of the student with life- and limb-threatening symptoms, and to triage these students to an appropriate level of care (back to the classroom, home with their guardian with follow up at their primary healthcare provider's office, or directly to the closest emergency department via emergency medical services). This article describes the initial assessment and management of three common emergencies associated with sport and physical activities.
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