Air Care Series: Ideal Resuscitation Pressure in Polytrauma with TBI

Air Care Series: Ideal Resuscitation Pressure in Polytrauma with TBI

Damage Control Resuscitation, Permissive Hypotension, Fluid Restrictive Resuscitation… Regardless of name, with all the enthusiasm surrounding permissive hypotension in the actively bleeding trauma patient, what do we do when they have a TBI? Take a dive into the literature surrounding ideal perfusion pressures of patients suffering from TBIs and traumatic injury to find out if we know what pressure is really the best.

Read More

The Importance of the RUG

The Importance of the RUG

It is early on in your residency training, when you receive sign-out of a patient who was involved in an MVC with multiple injuries including a stable pelvic injury. The patient, a middle-aged male, has not voided three hours into his visit and there is no mention of any obvious genital trauma.  He has had a negative FAST exam in addition to the rest of your primary and secondary assessment. The patient mentions to the nurse that he is trying to urinate but cannot void and has some discomfort. The bladder scan shows that the patient has about 500cc of urine and when the nurse goes to place a urinary catheter she pauses as she sees what appears to be dried blood at the urethral opening. After reassessing the patient who is still hemodynamically stable with normal mentation, his findings are discussed with Urology who recommend getting a retrograde urethrogram prior to any additional procedures. 

Read More

Protect Me! "Flights" #4 Recap

Protect Me! "Flights" #4 Recap

Welcome to the Final Recap of our “Flights” Case Series!

Thanks to all those who participated in the discussion and to those who tuned into the “Flights” cases throughout the spring and summer.  The final "Flights" cases centered in on several challenging airway scenarios.  Penetrating neck trauma with a tracheal injury; GSW to the face with significantly altered anatomy; and a tracheostomy displaced and a patient with critical hypoxia - airway management in the field requires a nimble mind and knowledge of one's own equipment.  Take a look at our thoughts on the cases and see what you might do in similar situations.

Read More

"Protect Me" - Flights Case 4

"Protect Me" - Flights Case 4

Welcome to the Fourth Case in our Air Care and Mobile Care Flight Orientation Curriculum for 2016! 

It is a beautiful sunny Memorial Day and you arrive early for your C-pod shift, energized by the knowledge that you will be getting out early with time to enjoy the day. Your patients are an enjoyable mix of pathology and acuity and everyone is quite polite and gracious. The tones drop just before it is time to hand over the radio to the dedicated flight doc and you can’t but marvel at your good fortune. You grab the blood and head up to the helipad for your flight...

Read More

Pre-Hospital Trauma Care – Lessons Learned From the Front

Pre-Hospital Trauma Care – Lessons Learned From the Front

The UC Division of EMS has recorded a series of podcasts to celebrate EMS Week 2016.  We are honored to be able to engage EMS Providers throughout the world with this forum.  If you practice pre-hospital medicine, we would like to say thank you and that we appreciate everything you do to provide a high level of care to ill and injured patients in a wide variety of austere environments.  For this podcast, we were joined by Dr. Jay Johannigman, Chief of the Division of Trauma and Critical Care at the University of Cincinnati.  Dr. Johannigman has over thirty years of military experience which includes 6 deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan.  Dr. Johannigman joined us to discuss how the military experience has changed civilian trauma care in the United States.    

Read More

Flights - A Stab in the Dark - Curated Comments and Expert Commentary

Flights - A Stab in the Dark - Curated Comments and Expert Commentary

Thanks to everybody who contributed to an excellent discussion of the care of the patient on our second “flight.”  If you didn’t get a chance to check out the case and the discussion, check it out here.  Below is the curated comments from the community and a podcast from Dr. Hinckley and Flight Nurse Practitioner Jason Peng

Q1 - Walk through your initial assessment of this patient.  What are the critical aspects of the assessment of this patient?

In response to this question, most everybody wanted to first act on the bleeding wound in the patient’s right antecubital fossa.  As explained by Dr. Renne, “I would want to be systematic but efficient, probably using a C-ABCD approach to these kind of critical patients, with the first C being any sort of life-threatening but "C"ontrollable hemorrhage.”  Dr. Renne also had a fine point with regards to checking for other potential, as of yet unseen, injuries.  This is a patient with multiple stab wounds, it is crucial to conduct a quick, but thorough search for stab wounds to the back, axilla, groin, and/or other locations where significant blood loss could be caused by a stab wound.

Read More

Flights - A Stab in the Dark

Flights - A Stab in the Dark

You are working overnight as the H2 doc based at Butler County Regional Airport.  It’s bitter cold out (for Ohio that is).  Its only 11 PM and already the temperature has dropped to 9 degrees fahrenheit on its way to a low of 0.  You are in the lounge refamiliarizing yourself with the contents of the critical care cells when the tones go off: “Scene: stab wound – Hamilton Ohio”

You and the nurse grab your equipment, the blood cooler, and head to the helicopter.  You put the critical care cells back in their spot in the rear of the helicopter and then buckle in for the short flight to the scene.

Your patient is a 23 year-old female who was in an argument with her boyfriend earlier in the evening.  The verbal argument quickly escalated, her boyfrienf pulling a knife and stabbing her multiple times in the right arm and right chest.  He fled the scene and she managed to call 911.  The first responders found the patient with significant active bleeding from her arm as well as chest.  She was initially responsive, but is now only awake to painful stimuli.

You meet the EMS crew in the back of the squad truck and assess the patient from the head of the bed.

Read More

Pericardiocentesis

Pericardiocentesis

First, pericardiocentesis should be considered a temporizing procedure.  In the setting of trauma, you are hoping that the pericardiocentesis will clear a small amount of blood from the pericardial space and remove any tamponade the might be present.  It is likely, however, because of the mechanism of injury, that blood will again rapidly accumulate leading to recurrent tamponade physiology.  Ultimately (but not on Air Care — DON’T do a clamshell), these patients will need a pericardial window, exploration, and repair of whatever injury is causing the accumulation of blood. 

Read More

Lessons in Transport - Your Friend and the Bleeding Patient's Friend: TXA in trauma

Lessons in Transport - Your Friend and the Bleeding Patient's Friend: TXA in trauma

TXA… What can be said about TXA that hasn’t already been said.  TXA is good for what ails you.

Nosebleed? No problem.

Menorrhagia? TXA can fix that.

Involved in a motor vehicle crash with multiple pelvic fractures, a busted up spleen, hemorrhaging internally? TXA has your back.

In this podcast, Dr. Hill, Dr. Steuerwald, and Dr. Gerecht sit down and talk through the indications for using TXA in the prehospital environment and briefly discuss some of the evidence for its use.

Read More

Resuscitation of Penetrating Trauma Patients

Resuscitation of Penetrating Trauma Patients

In our last podcast we covered the basics of the evaluation of the patient with blunt trauma.  We switch gears a little bit this week and focus a little more on penetrating trauma.  In this podcast, Dr. Hinckley and Dr. Chris Miller discuss several facets of the care of penetrating trauma patients including the initial approach and evaluation, detection of subtle presentations of shock, and triggers to initiate transfusion of blood products.  In this accompanying blog post, I’d like to focus primarily on why we might want to withhold fluids on penetrating trauma patients.

Read More

On Tourniquets and Lives Saved

On Tourniquets and Lives Saved

Though tourniquets were likely in use since Roman times, the term “tourniquet” was originally turned by Louis Petit, the 18th century inventor of the screw tourniquet.  Though numerous design advancements have occurred and new devices have been made in the centuries that have followed, the basic principles of tourniquet use are essentially unchanged.  A tourniquet applies an external pressure to a limb (usually) that exceeds the arterial pressure in that extremity.  In this way the inflow of arterial blood to an extremity is stopped.  For a surgeon, in the setting of a prospective extremity surgery, this allows for the creation of a bloodless operative field.  For Emergency Medicine providers, tourniquets can aid in the exploration of extremity wounds, allowing the identification of injuries to tendons, joints, and vascular structures.  And perhaps most importantly, tourniquets applied proximal to the site of penetrating traumatic extremity injuries can cease bleeding from arterial injuries.

Read More

Lessons in Transport - Hypotensive Resuscitation

Lessons in Transport - Hypotensive Resuscitation

Permissive Hypotensionis also known as hypotensive resuscitation or low volume resuscitation

What is it?

A resuscitation strategy in the critically ill trauma patient (primarily applicable to penetrating trauma but also adapted to blunt trauma) where we allow the systolic BP to remain as low as necessary to avoid exsanguination while still maintaining critical end organ perfusion. (typically defined as appropriate mental status & or the presence of a radial pulse)

The Thought Process:"Don't pop the clot"...

By allowing lower blood pressures we avoid the potential disruption of an unstable fresh clot and thus worsening bleeding caused by higher BP's. 

Read More