Every Breath You Take – An Introduction to the Breathless Patient in the ED

Induction to EM

Breathless patients are a challenge in the ED. Shortness of breath can be a frightening presenting complaint for both patients and doctors. As always, think about the possible life threatening causes and actively rule them out. For breathless patients think especially about: Pneumonia Asthma/COPD Pulmonary Embolism Acute left ventricular failure Pneumothorax     Breathless Patients Podcast In […]

Talking, Teaching & Technology – Victoria Brazil @SocraticEM at St Emlyn’s

Vic

You probably know by now that SMACC Gold was awesome. There simply aren’t enough superlatives to describe the magnitude of inspiration on offer from the world’s finest critical care speakers.  Putting together a programme like SMACC’s was an incredible feat – where would you even start?   The answer to that question comes naturally – […]

Paeds Tips You Won’t Find In Books – @_NMay at SMACC Gold

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Talking at SMACC Gold seemed like such a good idea in advance – and it was a wonderful (if faintly terrifying!) experience. When I came up with this title (yes – I was in the privileged position of picking the title of my own talk), I had envisioned something totally SMACC – a completely tweetable […]

Joe Lex – The Godfather of FOAM makes an offer you can’t refuse

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One of the greatest things about the FOAM movement is how much it feels like a family. There’s a real willingness to share and contribute to one another which is really refreshing, an ethos captured in Tim Leeuwenberg’s SMACC reflections blog post. And we know that:   A man who doesn’t spend time with his […]

JC: Scribes in the ED?

Escribano

Last week in the Journal Club we looked at this paper on the introduction of ED scribes from the American Journal of Emergency Medicine http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0735675713001940    Understanding this paper requires some grasp of the difference in processes between US and UK Emergency Departments: for a basic description click below. Electronic Medical Records in the ED […]

When Sick Means Sick: Emesemantics and Vomiting in Kids

Image from Healthysimulation.com

When I was preparing for my talk at smaccGOLD I contacted the wonderful Ross Fisher, a Paediatric Surgeon, to ask him for some tips; what did he wish all ED docs and GPs knew about paediatric surgical patients? He was kind enough to provide me with a list of hints, tips and pearls of wisdom […]

Who’s That Girl? Impostor Syndrome at #SMACCGold

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I want to let you into a secret. I’m an impostor.   OK, that’s not quite true. I’m a 34-year-old (shock!) Emergency Medicine trainee with a penchant for karaoke and a passion for education, but I’m really not anybody special. I play the piano (badly) and can struggle through a basic conversation in French or […]

Self Experimentation in Medical Education – LA for ABGs

Bruised Wrist

You are probably aware that many great scientific discoveries have been made when doctors decide to experiment on themselves. Self experimentation is sort of a tradition – take the famous discovery of Helicobacter pylori‘s role in gastritis and peptic ulcer disease by Nobel prize-winning Barry Marshall (he and Robin Warren were awarded the Nobel Prize […]

JC: Updated NICE Head Injury Guidelines – Worth a Scan?

NICE CG 176

In the last few days Twitter has been buzzing (does twitter buzz? Or does it chirp? Tweet?) with EM practitioners getting to grips with the latest iteration of the NICE Head Injury Clinical Guideline, updated this month to CG176. The BMJ has produced a nice summary but sadly it’s behind a paywall – so here’s […]

Miscommunication and Handover in the ED

Photo courtesy of jamingray (Flickr)

Eavesdropping On my last set of night shifts I was reviewing a patient on our observation ward when I overheard the following nursing handover: “Mrs Jones is waiting for ophthalmology to close her eyelid wound. She had a fit and was found at the top of the stairs.” Now. This was frustrating for me. Why? […]

Attitude of Gratitude – Showing Some Love in the ED

Nat in Uganda 2004

There are many things I do which are stereotypically “British”: drinking tea, apologising instinctively (especially when it isn’t my fault), engaging in our national sport (queueing), becoming intensely irritated when other people fail to comply with the [unwritten] rules of our national sport (aka queue jumping) and, apparently, struggling to express positive perceptions about people. […]