Trick of the Trade: A removable guidewire

An essential skill of any innovative troubleshooter in the Emergency Department is the ability to recognize when one piece of equipment may be used elsewhere. For instance, what’s your go-to approach when looking for a spare guidewire? Let’s say you are trying to salvage an ultrasound-guided basilic vein IV catheterization.

Here’s where I go for guidewires:

  • Central line kits
  • Pneumothorax pigtail kits
  • Seldinger-based cricothyrotomy kits


By |2016-11-11T18:51:26-08:00Jan 10, 2012|Tricks of the Trade|

Trick of the Trade: Bandaging the scalp laceration


Scalp lacerations are one of the most common injuries which present to the Emergency Department. Applying a dry bandage over the staples or sutures can be a challenge because the tape just has nothing to adhere to.

We reviewed the use of tubular cotton gauze to create a beanie hat, but what should you do if you can’t find any tubular gauze? Ever since I wrote about the beanie hat trick, people in the ED have been using the tubular gauze more and we’re always out of stock whenever I look for it!


By |2019-02-19T18:08:01-08:00Dec 5, 2011|Tricks of the Trade|

Trick of the Trade: Securing a peripheral IV on sweaty skin

Patients can become extremely diaphoretic with high fevers or if under the influence of PCP or a stimulant. Slippery, sweaty skin can pose a problem when securing peripheral IV’s. Adhesive tapes that are typically designed for securing these IV’s often slip off… immediately followed by the IV falling out.

How can you secure the IV … without using staples and sutures? 

By |2016-11-11T18:51:44-08:00Nov 29, 2011|Tricks of the Trade|
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