Article review: CT irradiation exposure and risk

I’m still working on my 2009 ACEP Scientific Assembly handout for the LLSA exam test prep session (which were actually due yesterday!). Even though the conference isn’t until mid-October, the handouts are always due a few months earlier. And every year, it sneaks up on me! One of the articles I’m reviewing is about the risks of CT irradiation, published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2007.

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By |2016-11-11T19:01:58-08:00Aug 4, 2009|Radiology|

Article review: Propofol (2007 ACEP Guideline)

PropofolGiven all the recent brouhaha around propofol and Michael Jackson, I thought I would review the 2007 Annals of EM Clinical Practice Advisory paper on the use of propofol in the Emergency Department for procedural sedation. This is one of the 2009 Lifelong Learning Self-Assessment (LLSA) articles. Each year EM-board certified physicians are tested on 20 pre-selected LLSA articles to maintain eligibility for re-certification.

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By |2019-09-05T20:30:32-07:00Aug 3, 2009|Guideline Review, Tox & Medications|

Tricks of the Trade sneak peak: Teaching procedures

Teaching procedural skills in medical school is increasing falling on the shoulders of emergency physicians. Two common problems that arise are the equipment expenses and simulation of realism. Working with my colleague Dr. Jeff Tabas, we came up some creative ideas around the teaching of (1) the Seldinger technique for central line placement and (2) saphenous vein cutdown.

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By |2016-10-26T17:05:43-07:00Jul 29, 2009|Medical Education, Tricks of the Trade|

Trick of the Trade: The Digi-Speculum

Frequently patients present to the Emergency Department for lacerations, partial amputations, and abscesses of the fingers. After repairing the wound or injury, however, a bandage can be a bit unwieldy to apply and difficult to secure. To me, an ugly bandage just seems to detract from all of the diligent work that you just put into a plastic surgeon-quality wound repair.

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By |2019-01-28T23:56:19-08:00Jul 22, 2009|Tricks of the Trade|

Trick of the Trade for Intubation: Two hands are better than one

Recently on my ED shifts, there were several especially challenging endotracheal intubation scenarios.

  • A patient with thick frothy sputum constantly oozing out her trachea such that we couldn’t see the vocal cords– no matter how much suction we used. Imagine the Diet Coke and Mentos backyard experiment. I’m not kidding.
  • A 300+ pound agitated trauma patient with almost no neck, who eventually was found to have an epidural and subdural hemorrhage.
  • A COPD patient who was increasingly lethargic, hypoxic, and hypercarbic (pCO2>115), who I knew would start desaturating quickly as soon as rapid-sequence induction drugs were given.

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By |2016-10-26T17:05:44-07:00Jul 8, 2009|Tricks of the Trade|

Tricks of the Trade: Let there be light!

In various ACEP News Tricks of the Trade columns, I have mentioned the importance of adequate lighting to visualize subtle injuries or pathologies. Traditional room overhead lighting is insufficient, especially if you are looking for that needle-in-a-haystack laceration in thick scalp hair or a tiny foreign body in a wound.

If you are using a traditional Tungsten penlight, you need to invest in a LED light source. LED penlights are very small (can fit on a keychain), super-bright, long-lasting, and costs only $3-30.

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By |2016-10-26T17:05:44-07:00Jul 1, 2009|Tricks of the Trade|
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