emergency medicine

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Paediatric health risks

Children in the COVID-19 pandemic: Between fear and care

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected children with direct impacts of the infection as well as on them leading normal lives. Schooling, play and vaccinations are among issues that can affect children’s health. Delay in taking paediatric patients to the emergency room (ER) has also had a negative impact, for example late treatment of acute appendicitis. Two experts from Spain tackled these topics…

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Heart attacks, heart failure, stroke

COVID-19’s cardiovascular complications

COVID-19 can cause serious cardiovascular complications including heart failure, heart attacks and blood clots that can lead to strokes, emergency medicine doctors at the University of Virgina report in a new scientific paper. They also caution that COVID-19 treatments can interact with medicines used to manage patients’ existing cardiovascular conditions.

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Coronavirus impact on A&E

COVID-19: UK emergency departments see dramatic fall in attendance

Accident and Emergency departments across the NHS have seen dramatic falls in attendances amid the ongoing coronavirus crisis. Latest figures for NHS England show that the total number of attendances at A&E departments in March 2020 was 1,531,100, a decrease of 29.4% on the same month last year. And while the figures are specifically for England, a similar pattern has been observed across the…

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False appendicitis alarm

Study reveals many unnecessary appendix surgeries in children

Surgery for appendicitis is the most common emergency operation in children. A new study has found that the UK has the highest reported national rate of ‘normal appendicectomy,’ where children undergo surgery for suspected appendicitis but laboratory examination of the removed appendix finds it to be normal. Although most children who are misdiagnosed as having appendicitis improve without…

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POCUS in Basque Country

Spreading point-of-care ultrasound across northern Spain

The rapid scanning and dynamic imaging capabilities offered by point-of-care ultrasound make it an invaluable tool for emergency medicine. Dr Enrique Ortiz Villacian (from Emergency Services at Donostia University Hospital in San Sebastián) and Dr Juanjo Zafra Sanchez (from the Emergency Unit at San Eloy Hospital in Barakaldo) discussed the role ultrasound plays in their respective emergency…

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In-depth exams for injured mountaineers

Ultrasound climbs the heights

Dr Philippe Mahiou practices anaesthesia in the Grenoble area, splitting his time between a private clinic and working as a helicopter doctor to attend mountaineering accidents. As part of his work, Mahiou routinely uses ultrasound, and understands the importance of the technology to guide anaesthesia in the operating room and assess patients in the field. When anaesthetist Dr Philippe Mahiou…

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Ultrasound in intracranial injuries

A future gold standard tool

Whilst researchers acknowledge ultrasound, when used as a tool to assess intracranial pressure in an emergency, is not a replacement for current gold standard invasive approaches, they believe it has enormous potential as a non-invasive and fast, cost-effective, and patient-friendly way to assess possible brain injury at a patient’s bedside. Consultant anaesthetist Dr Chiara Robba, a specialist…

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Cardiopulmonary resuscitation

Restart a Heart: Learn how to save a life with CPR

Today is World Restart a Heart Day. That's why medical students from Cardiff University are taking part in what is expected to be the largest mass CPR training event ever conducted. Medics and other lifesavers all around the globe will teach cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) to members of the public. Almost 239,000 people learned CPR in the UK alone as part of last year’s event and organisers…

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Combatting nosocomial infections

A&E Staphylococci POCT

Martin Möckel and Dorothee Riedlinger, from the Charité Medical University Berlin, Emergency and Acute Medicine Campus Virchow-Klinikum, and Campus Charité-Mitte report on POCT testing in the A&E Department to screen for Staphylococcus aureus colonisation of the nose or throat. People colonised with Staphylococci are at increased risk of developing a nosocomial, i.e. hospital acquired…

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Avoiding incidents

The digital early warning system

Staff shortages are among the most urgent healthcare problems. While digitisation might offer relief, unfortunately many hospitals lag behind in transforming their processes. As pressure mounts, the chorus is heard: ‘It’s high time for bold changes’. Indeed, this was the motto of the 2019 Western German Health Congress held in Cologne, an event that focuses on health policy and health…

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Be prepared

This 3D printed baby dummy could improve resuscitation training

Two millions: this is, worldwide, the number of babies which suffer suffocation during birth every year. A resuscitation procedure is sometimes the key to avert irreparable damages for the baby. And, for successful outcomes, promptness of action and preparation are vital. Researcher Mark Thielen (Industrial Design) from the Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) developed a 3D printed baby…

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Preview Medical Taiwan 2019

Healthcare exhibition showcases technology from Taiwan

Artificial intelligence clinics and rehab bikes, exoskeletons and stylish protections masks – healthcare in Taiwan has many faces and facets as the international medical & healthcare exhibition Medical Taiwan in Taipei will show from 27 to 30 June 2019. We visited participating companies and hospitals to give you a sneak preview of some of the highlights that might well create a buzz in…

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Pediatric resuscitation

Blindfolded training could help doctors save young lives

In a simulation training study, pediatric team leaders who wore a blindfold improved their leadership skills ratings by 11% over the course of 3 resuscitation scenarios, versus 5% for non-blindfolded leaders. Published in Frontiers in Pediatrics, the findings demonstrate a promising tool for improving training and outcomes in pediatric resuscitation. “Our study suggests that blindfolding the…

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Emergency medicine

D-dimer POCT for DVT considered ‘game-changer’ in ambulatory care

Radiometer Limited’s AQT90 FLEX analysers have been used in a successful trial to asses D-dimer point-of-care testing (POCT) for suspected lower limb deep vein thrombosis (DVT). The editorial piece, published in Emergency Nurse, describes a reduction in patient waiting times of up to 75%. The article, authored by Neal Aplin, Advanced Clinical Practitioner at the Great Western Hospitals NHS…

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Increased survival

Saving lives with centralised stroke services

A new analysis from University College London, King's and the University of Manchester finds an extra 69 lives are being saved every year as a result of further centralisation of services in Greater Manchester. In London, where earlier research had shown that centralising acute stroke services saved an extra 96 extra lives per year, these improvements have been sustained over time. Strokes, which…

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Point-of-care

Improving the safety and quality of pediatric emergency care with POC ultrasound

Point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) has become an important adjunct to clinical diagnosis and procedural guidance in the Pediatric Emergency Department (PED), supported by literature demonstrating that its use can improve patient safety and expedite life-saving care. POCUS further helps to reduce costs and children’s exposure to ionizing radiation. Not only is POCUS ideally suited for…

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Pilot project

Could AI 'Audrey' be the future first response assistant?

Imagine a first responder answering the call to a natural disaster, a house fire, or an active shooter incident where there may be multiple injuries and unknown casualties. The information the responder needs to fulfill the mission is immeasurable. When you also consider the volume of data they receive from other responders, dispatch, command centers, victims, and onlookers while receiving and…

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Mobile cMyC analysis

The future POCT heart attack test

Experts report that a new blood test to diagnose heart attacks could be carried out on a hand-held device in the not-too-distant future. The test, devised by a team at Kings College London, uses similar technology to the troponin test, but instead analyses cardiac myosin-binding protein C (cMyC). In research presented at the British Cardiovascular Society conference in Manchester, UK, this June,…

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Terror protection

Promising vaccines against anthrax, plague and tularemia

Anthrax, plague and tularemia are three potent agents terrorists would be likely to use in an attack, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Each is highly and quickly lethal to humans. But there are no licensed vaccines for tularemia and plague, and although there is an anthrax vaccine, it requires a burdensome immunization schedule and has severe side effects. Now, a…

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Defibrillator use

Italian law must change to improve survival from cardiac arrest

An Italian law requiring citizens to hold a certificate to use a defibrillator must change to improve survival from cardiac arrest, researchers argued today at Acute Cardiovascular Care 2018, a European Society of Cardiology congress. “Automated external defibrillator (AED) use before the arrival of the emergency medical services (EMS) plays a key role in improving victim survival from…

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Challenging, but rewarding

Emergency radiology advances – despite shortages and low recognition

Emergency radiology is no longer a babbling field; professionalisation will bring more recognition to this young subspecialty, according to Elizabeth Dick, a London-based consultant, who will coordinate part of the new European Diploma in Emergency Radiology (EDER), the European Society of Radiology’s new tool. We interviewed the radiologist, who spoke of her daily practice and why she loves…

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