Medical lessons learned in Afghanistan now helping injured Ukrainian troops

Watch: Nurse on sharing medical knowledge from Afghanistan war with Ukrainian colleagues.

Medical lessons learned in the Afghanistan War are being used to help treat injured Ukrainian troops.

Thousands have suffered severe injuries in the war with Russia, with soldiers experiencing fractures, traumatic brain injuries, amputations, and burns.

These injuries were not seen in such high numbers before the Russian invasion in February 2022.

The 20 years of operations in Afghanistan have been credited with fuelling huge medical advances and lessons learned there are helping civilian patients in the NHS. The knowledge is now being shared with Ukrainian medics.

Warrant Officer Emma Spiers, Army Burns and Plastics Specialist Nurse, who was serving as a nurse during the height of the Afghanistan campaign, has been passing on medical information to Ukrainian colleagues.

She told Forces News: "I spent all of my time in the Royal Centre for Defence Medicine, Selly Oak, for those who would remember it as such, reconstructing war-injured soldiers within the hospital, within the NHS system, as a military nurse.

"I've been lucky enough to be part of two rehabilitation conferences held at Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre, Stanford Hall, where we’ve been sharing those lessons and knowledge with our Ukrainian colleagues to build and support their capability."

Watch: Former Army chief on the lessons learned from Iraq and Afghanistan.

As the brutal war continues, the casualty numbers will only rise, leaving tens of thousands of Ukrainian troops and civilians facing a long road of recovery ahead of them.

WO Spiers added: "We all really feel for the people of Ukraine and being able to share knowledge that might save one, 10 or 100 lives is really important.

"Nobody ever wants to see anyone who's injured in war, nobody ever wants to see suffering, and so if my expertise can help alleviate even a small amount of that, that's really really rewarding."

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