Sepsis and Pregnancy

Pregnant graffiti in Lebanon (Wikimedia)

According to an excerpt from Randi Hutter Epstein’s book Get Me Out: A History of Childbirth From the Garden of Eden to the Sperm Bank, five hundred years ago a folk healer advised Catherine de Medici, then the queen of France, to drink mare’s urine and bathe in cow manure to increase her chances of getting pregnant. And she did it. Fortunately, you won’t need mare’s urine to treat pregnant patients with sepsis. But you will need to listen to the March EM:RAP podcast or read the PDF called Sepsis and Infections in Pregnancy by Stewart Swadron MD, Gillian Schmitz MD, Rachel Bridwell MD and Brandon Carius PA.

What are the most common infections seen in pregnancy in your region? Are vital signs good indicators during maternal and fetal resuscitation? If you don’t have much time there are five quick Take Home Points for a 30-second read.

Wikimedia photo.

Who Knew? Some of the earliest women’s health books were written by monks…although they would not be my first or even seventh guess as authors. One of the most popular monk guides, Women’s Secrets, or De Secretis Mulierum, has been translated from the original text into modern language by Helen Rodnite Lemay, a medieval scholar.

Get Your Procedure Game Plan On

Perikles Kakousis, weightlifting Olympic champion. St. Louis Olympic Games, 1904. Wikicommons.

Procedures form a structural competency in our medical practices. There’s a satisfaction that goes with a well-executed procedure be it placing a chest tube or realigning an ankle dislocation. There are some bread and butter procedures we do weekly such as intubations to those that call for our expertise rarely such as a cricothyroidotomy. So how do you get your game plan on with the rarely performed procedures? Take a listen to the EM:RAP March podcast or read the pdf called Procedural Competency by Mel Herbert MD and Jestin Carlson MD for quick suggestions on how to stay on top of rarely performed procedures. You’ll be a procedural champ and win the game.

Who Knew? The most widely accepted inception date for the Ancient Olympics is 776 BC; this is based on inscriptions, found at Olympia, listing the winners of a footrace held every four years starting in 776 BC. Tradition has it that Coroebus, a cook from the city of Elis, was the first Olympic champion. (Wikipedia)

 

 

 

Giant Cell Arteritis

I’m looking at cases to post and found one that could be me…because I’m over 60. Here’s the lowdown: over 60 years old with sudden vision loss? over 60 years old with transient vision loss? over 60 years old with transient double vision? Think Giant Cell Arteritis and take a listen to the March EM:RAP podcast: Giant Cell Arteritis by Ilene Claudius MD and Edward Margolin MD.

Or take a quick look at the PDF and bring home the take home points…it’ll make you a giant in the know.

Who Knew? Tales of giants are found in many cultures. The word giant, first attested in 1297, was derived from the Gigantes (Greek: Γίγαντες[1]) of Greek mythology. (Wikipedia)

Somewhere Over the Rainbow

Dorothy’s original ruby slippers (Wikicommons)

Neonatal stools are a source of concern for parents and color changes can trigger a visit to the emergency department or outpatient clinic. What colors raise your index of concern for serious pathologies such as necrotizing enterocolitis, malrotation with midgut volvulus or intussusception? Plug in your thumb drive or roll out your CMES app and take a listen to Jess Mason MD and Jason Woods MD as they discuss the EM:RAP podcast called Neonatal Stool Rainbow. You won’t find the Wizard of Oz but you’ll take home some knowledge…even without your ruby slippers.

 

 

Rural Medicine: Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Glucometer. Courtesy Wikicommons.

Once a month I will comment on the Rural Medicine podcast from EM:RAP. It’s exciting to read CME that can be applied globally no matter where you live or what resources you have at hand. Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) In The Village by Vanessa Cardy MD and Stuart Swadron MD can be found in the February 2019 EM:RAP podcasts or take a quick read of the PDF for bullet points.

The question of the month? How do you manage DKA when you don’t have access to labs? 

Urine dip strip. Courtesy Wikicommons.

And…is the urine ketone strip a good test?

Stress & Burnout

Your working at 5000 rpms as patient after patient after patient arrives at your Emergency Department for treatment. It’s a typical shift but this one never stops gaining momentum until you and the staff are at the breaking point. You think you can manage, but like any excellent racer…some days you can hit a wall, flame and die.

Take a listen or read the August 2018 EM:RAP podcast and PDF called; “Beating Burnout” by Annahieta Kalantari DO. It’s there for you to access using a CMES-Pi or the CMES thumb drives and it’s worth a listen. Even being retired, I was able to understand better why I felt the way I did and what happens to all of us as we deliver medical care.

Take care of yourself and your staff…it’s the only way to win the race.

 

 

How to Kill a Patient During Airway Management

Airway Management is just that…managing the airway upside down and inside out. Take a quick read of the PDF or listen to EM:RAP’s November MP3 audio podcast called Strayerisms: Fluid Filled Airway. It’ll float your boat.

Correct ET tube placement, but if you tube the esophagus, leave the ET tube in place and use it as a landmark.

According to Dr. Reuben Strayer MD, the author, there are four ways to harm your patient during airway management: failure to oxygenate; failure to ventilate; worsening perfusion; and aspiration. His suggestions are doable no matter where you practice or what resources you lack…remember…your greatest resource is knowledge.

 

 

 

Who Knew? Probably the oldest recovered boat in the world, the Pesse canoe, found in the Netherlands, is a dugout made from the hollowed tree trunk of a Pinus sylvestris that was constructed somewhere between 8200 and 7600 BC. This canoe is exhibited in the Drents Museum in Assen, Netherlands. (Not looking too seaworthy these days.)

 

 

Exercise Induced Anaphylaxis?! You Betcha.

Facial angioedema from allergen exposure. Photo from Wikipedia.

Think you know everything about anaphylaxis? Every see a case of Exercise Induced Anaphylaxis (EIA)? The EM:RAP October podcast called; Exercise Induced Anaphylaxis by Jess Mason MD and Gita Pensa MD will give you hives…or at least goosebumps.

Points to ponder: Is there a relationship to food? Can EIA be fatal? What are the clues to diagnosis? All these answers and more await you in this October EM:RAP podcast.

Who Knew? Professor Charles Richet was a French physiologist who coined the term aphylaxis in 1902. This was later changed to anaphylaxis and his pioneering work in Immunology earned him a Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1913.

 

Crash Rapid Sequence Intubation (RSI): Clear the Runway for the Crashing Airway Patient

Twenty years ago I was a volunteer at a small rural hospital. A trauma patient was on the way in and I asked the nurse to prime two IV bags, open the BVM and ETT. She declined and said their policy was not to open supplies until at bedside. I get it…supplies are a resource not to be wasted…but having a dedicated airway kit prepped and ready at the bedside is crucial to RSI success.

The crash airway mnemonic SOAP ME runs down the list of everything you need for a successful Rapid Sequence Intubation (RSI) in the crashing airway patient. EM:RAP’s September podcast of Critical Care Mailbag: The Crash Checklist by Anand Swaminathan MD and Scott Weingart MD should be on everyone listening list.

Review what the mnemonic SOAP ME checklist stands for; how to temporize the crashing airway; how to treat the obstructed airway; and most importantly…tips on how to be ready for any airway headed for a crash and burn.

Heres a quick reference for SOAP ME. What’s in your kit? Leave a comment and start the dialogue.

Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Who Knew? William Macewan (1848-1924), a Glasgow surgeon, invented a type of endotracheal tube pictured. He was the first person to use an endotracheal tube to give a patient anaesthetic, in 1878. A tube was placed in the larynx to give the patient a dose of chloroform. These examples are made from steel and brass. They range in length from 210 mm to 80 mm for patients of all sizes.

 

Bone Up on Your Rongeur Skills

EMRAP‘s YouTube channel has a plethora of tutorial videos and today’s recommendation will take less than 3 minutes to view. Take a quick review of how to rongeur a fingertip bone to facilitate skin closure. Added bonus…how to make a finger tourniquet from a glove. View here.

Who Knew? Think of a rongeur as a heavy duty forceps used to remove bone. The word is derived from the French noun meaning “rodent” or the adjective meaning “gnawing”.

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