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Setting up elevation sling

Updated: Feb 19, 2021

Objectives: Can be used to reduce swelling and minimize bleeding in the forearm and hand (e.g., fracture of hand/fingers) or stabilize collarbone fracture.

Characteristics: Support the forearm and hand in a raised position with the injured arm's fingertips touching the opposite shoulder. It offers support by resting your injured arm across your chest close to the body.

This article is not intended to replace medical advice. Seek professional help if you encounter any problem with first aid procedures.

Reminders for setting up arm/elevation sling: Do not tie any knots near the fracture/wounded site to prevent adding extra pressure on the affected part/causing discomfort.

How to use triangular bandage to set up elevation sling


  1. Support the injured arm across the chest with the fingertips resting on the non-injured side shoulder.

positioning of arm to set up elevation sling

2. Lay the triangular bandage over the injured arm, with the bandage's tip pointing towards the injured arm's elbow.

procedures of setting up elevation sling

3. Tuck the base of the bandage underneath the injured arm.

4. Bring one end (from the injured side) of the triangular bandage diagonally across the back to meet the other end (near the non-injured shoulder).

procedures of setting up elevation sling

5. Tie a reef knot on top of the non-injured shoulder's collarbone, tuck in and tidy up the free ends.

6. Secure the edge of the bandage at the injured side elbow by twisting and tucking in the remaining fabrics or securing it with a safety pin.

Reef knot for securing triangular bandage during first aid

​Check your circulation every 10 minutes; if the arm sling is too tight, readjust it.

  1. Press the finger until it turns pale, release, and blood flow should return straight away.

  2. Check for any numbness or tingling sensation.

Additional notes for collarbone fracture:

Before you apply the elevation sling, you can add a soft pad between your body and the arm (on the injured side).

Putting soft pad between elbow and body for collarbone fracture mangement

Additional notes for collarbone and upper limb fracture:

After you apply the elevation sling, you can add a horizontal strip across the chest for additional support as follow:

  1. Folding spare triangular bandage into a rectangular shape.

  2. Lay it on top of the *upper arm of the injured side.

  3. Bring it across the chest.

  4. Tie a reef knot on the chest wall of the non-injured side.

  5. Check circulation and breathing after application; if it is too tight, readjust it.


DO NOT put extra pressure on the fracture site by avoiding the stabilizing strip directly on the fracture site.

Stabilising collarbone or upper limb fracture using triangular bandage

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