Original studies of ultrasound-guided thoracentesis concluded a 2% risk of pneumothorax. A recent single center study of 9320 thoracenteses over 12 years all by procedural experts had pneumothorax rate of 0.6%. This same study also demonstrated a very low incidence…
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Continuous Capnometry Should be Standard Practice for Moderate-Deep Procedural Sedation Continuous capnometry has been consistently proven to identify patients undergoing moderate-deep procedural sedation who have impaired ventilation well before hypoxia develops.  There have been at least 8 studies that have…
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Chest tube placement, or tube thoracostomy, can be an anxiety-provoking procedure for both the patient AND the operator.  It can also be a very gratifying procedure for the operator when performed successfully and without patient discomfort. Here are a few…
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Video laryngoscopy is superior to direct laryngoscopy for emergency intubations in the ICU. A recent meta-analysis based on nine trials evaluated 2,133 ICU patients and concluded that video laryngoscopy (VL) has a higher first pass success rate compared to direct…
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Intraosseous vascular access using the EZ-IO device is a wonderful option for emergency access in the hospital or pre-hospital setting. Intraosseous lines are easy to place with proper training and can serve as emergency vascular access during cardiac arrest or…
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According to recent studies, atraumatic needles (ATN) reduce the rate of post-dural puncture headache (PDPH) when compared to traumatic needles (TN – or bevel-tip needles such as Quincke needles) (27% vs 60%).  Also, the mean duration of PDPH from ATN…
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Does Simulation Based Training Improve Central Line Success Rates? Simulation-based procedural training has become increasingly popular in academic medical centers and among medical trainees.  Limited data has suggested that simulation based training improves success rates and safety, but evidence has…
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Rapid Ultrasonography in Shock:  Is this really useful? Caring for patients with undifferentiated hypotension, causes anxiety for most health care providers.  This is natural.  Fear, however, must not lead to hesitation or poor decision-making.  Therapies chosen early in shock disproportionately…
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Emergency department (ED) intubation is constantly evolving, with new devices, techniques, and medications being frequently adopted. To evaluate temporal trends, National Emergency Airway Registry (NEAR) investigators analyzed registry data on ED intubations at 13 large hospitals in the U.S., Canada,…
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Patients diagnosed with cirrhosis are regularly admitted and readmitted to the hospital. Statistics show that the 90-day readmission rate is approximately 50%. A recent study analyzed the rate of readmission at 30-days and 90-days and the relevant causes among patients…
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How to Differentiate Pleural Effusion Exudates from Transudates   Historically, Light’s criteria have been used to classify pleural effusions into transudates or exudates.  Light’s criteria were established by Dr. Richard Light in 1972.[1]  These criteria maximize sensitivity but have a…
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Where to place a central venous catheter is a decision driven mainly by individual preference. The limited evidence available has not established any site as superior; the subclavian position has been reported as being less infection-prone, but more likely to cause…
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A study from an urban EM residency program determined that in-plane ultrasound-guided central venous catheterization is superior to out-of-plane ultrasound-guided central line placement. This study was only a single center study that was a randomized crossover study of ER residents…
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How do we assess a cirrhotic patients bleed risk prior to a planned bedside procedure?  Can our standard platelet count and coagulation studies, prothrombin time (PT/INR) and partial thromboplastin time (aPTT), accurately predict bleed risk in cirrhotic patients?  The quick…
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Video Laryngoscopy Is Superior to Direct Laryngoscopy for Failed Intubation Attempts in the ER Although video laryngoscopy has repeatedly been shown to be superior to direct laryngoscopy, there has not yet been any specific directive instructing emergency department (ED) intubators…
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