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   Table of Contents - Current issue
January-March 2020
Volume 20 | Issue 1
Page Nos. 1-53

Online since Tuesday, January 28, 2020

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Point-of-care ultrasound for the acute abdomen in the primary health care p. 1
Moien A B. Khan, Fikri M Abu-Zidan
Point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) is a focused examination, which is performed and interpreted at the bedside by the treating physician answering a specific clinical question. It is currently utilized as an essential adjunct to physical examination in many medical specialties. Recent advances in technology have made POCUS machines portable, affordable, and could be used with minimal training even by nonradiologists. This review aims to cover the fundamental physics of POCUS and its applications for diagnosing the acute abdomen in the primary health care including the most common causes encountered by family physicians. These are acute appendicitis, acute cholecystitis, renal colic, ectopic pregnancy, acute diverticulitis, bowel obstruction, and abdominal aortic aneurysm. We hope to encourage primary care physicians to incorporate POCUS in their routine clinical practice. We also highlight challenges encountered when using POCUS in the primary health care including limited availability and the need for proper training. Furthermore, we review the POCUS results when performed by primary health-care physicians. Integrating POCUS in primary health care empowers primary health-care physicians to provide high-quality, safe, and cost-effective care to the patients.
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Trauma transfers to the pediatric emergency department – Is it necessary? p. 12
Min Hui Lyria Hoa, Yong-Kwang Gene Ong, Jen Heng Pek
OBJECTIVES: Pediatric trauma patients presenting to general emergency departments (EDs) may be transferred to pediatric EDs for further management. Unnecessary transfers increase health-care costs, add to workload, and decrease satisfaction. We, therefore, aimed to evaluate the proportion of unnecessary pediatric trauma transfers and describe patient characteristics of these transfers at the pediatric ED. METHODS: A retrospective chart review of cases with trauma-related diagnoses was carried out from January to April 2017. Information regarding patient demographics, diagnosis, and clinical progress was collected. A transfer was defined as unnecessary if the patient was discharged from the pediatric ED without any therapeutic procedure performed. RESULTS: There were 117 cases of trauma transfers. The mean age was 8.3 ± 4.9 years, and 77 (65.8%) patients were male. Ninety-five (81.2%) transfers were from restructured hospitals. Thirty-one (26.5%) cases were admitted to the hospital. Thirty-four (29.1%) cases were unnecessary transfers. The length of stay in the ED for these transferred cases was 118.4 ± 87.1 min. Referring ED was not significantly associated with discharge (odds ratio [OR]: 1.28, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.43–3.83, P = 0.792), discharge without any therapeutic procedure performed (OR: 1.47, 95% CI: 0.50–4.31, P = 0.591), or length of stay (mean difference: 22.3 min, 95% CI: 84.5–39.9, P = 0.471). CONCLUSION: About a third of trauma transfers were unnecessary. Further collaborative efforts would be necessary to further define the situation in different health-care settings and exact reasons elucidated so that targeted interventions could be implemented to improve pediatric trauma care.
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Adrenaline use as a poor predictor for the return of spontaneous circulation among victims of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest according to a national emergency medical services database p. 18
Chaiyaporn Yuksen, Phatthranit Phattharapornjaroen, Woranee Kreethep, Chonnakarn Suwanmano, Chestsadakon Jenpanitpong, Rawin Nonnongku, Yuwares Sittichanbuncha, Kittisak Sawanyawisuth
OBJECTIVE: This study aimed to determine additional predictors of cardiopulmonary resuscitation success using a national emergency medical services (EMS) database. METHODS: This retrospective study was conducted by retrieving data from the Information Technology of Emergency Medical Service, a national EMS database. The inclusion criteria were adult patients (18 years old or over) who suffered from out-of-hospital cardiac arrest and received emergency life support. The outcome was a return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC). Predictors for ROSC were determined using multivariate logistic regression analysis. RESULTS: During the study period, 1070 patients met the study criteria, among whom 199 (18.60%) belonged to the ROSC group. Five factors were eligible for multivariate logistic regression analysis for predicting ROSC. Accordingly, only adrenaline administration was independently and negatively associated with ROSC with an adjusted odds ratio of 0.722 (95% confidence interval: 0.522, 0.997) and a Hosmer–Lemeshow Chi-square of 5.84 (P = 0.665). CONCLUSIONS: Adrenaline use may be a poor predictor for ROSC during out-of-hospital cardiac arrest.
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Comparison of the time to successful endotracheal intubation using the Macintosh laryngoscope or KingVision video laryngoscope in the emergency department: A prospective observational study p. 22
Tanvi Mallick, Ankur Verma, Sanjay Jaiswal, Meghna Haldar, Wasil Rasool Sheikh, Amit Vishen, Abhishek Snehy, Rinkey Ahuja
OBJECTIVE: Intubation is a skill that must be mastered by the emergency physician (EP). Today, we have a host of video laryngoscopes which have been developed to make intubations easier and faster. It may seem that in a busy emergency department (ED), a video laryngoscope (VL) in the hands of an EP would help him intubate patients faster compared to the traditional direct laryngoscope (DL). Our goal was to compare the time taken to successfully intubate patients coming in ED using King Vision VL (KVVL) and DL. MATERIALS AND METHODS: This was a prospective observational study on patients coming to the ED requiring emergent intubation. They were allocated one to one alternatively into two groups – KVVL and DL. Accordingly, KVVL or DL intubations were carried out by the EPs. Time taken to intubate, first-pass success, and crossover between laryngoscopes were recorded. RESULTS: A total of 350 patients were enrolled in the study. Overall, mean time to intubate patients using the DL was 15.85 s (95% confidence interval [CI] 14.05–17.65), while the meantime with KVVL was 13.75 s (95% CI 12.32–15.18) (P = 0.084). The overall first-pass success rates with DL and KVVL were 89.94% and 85.16%, respectively (P = 0.076). A total of 7.43% (95% CI 5.12–10.66) patients had crossover between laryngoscopes. CONCLUSION: We found the KVVL to have a similar performance to the DL in terms of time for intubations and ease in difficult airways. We consider the KVVL a useful device for EDs to equip themselves with.
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The effect of prehospital telecardiology on the mortality and morbidity of ST-segment elevated myocardial infarction patients undergoing primary percutaneous coronary intervention: A cross-sectional study p. 28
Peyman Saberian, Nader Tavakoli, Parisa Hasani-Sharamin, Seyed Hashem Sezavar, Fatemeh Dadashi, Elnaz Vahidi
OBJECTIVES: The sooner the primary percutaneous coronary intervention (PPCI) is performed, the better prognosis is expected in patients with acute myocardial infarction. The objective is to evaluate the effect of prehospital triage based on electrocardiogram (ECG) and telecardiology on the mortality and morbidity of ST-segment elevated myocardial infarction (STEMI) patients undergoing PPCI. METHODS: This cross-sectional study was conducted based on the data extracted from the hospital information system (HIS) of one general hospital, which had the capability of performing PPCI 24 h a day, 7 days a week. All patients with STEMI who undergone PPCI during 1 year, transferred by emergency medical service (EMS) and their data were registered in the HIS were eligible. Besides the baseline characteristics, first medical contact (FMC)-to-balloon time was recorded. Morbidity based on predischarge left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) and mortality based on Global Registry of Acute Cardiac Events (GRACE) score were also recorded. Patients who were referred to the hospital by EMS with prehospital ECG and telecardiology were compared with those without prehospital ECG. RESULTS: Totally, 298 patients with STEMI were enrolled, of whom 183 patients (61.4%) had prehospital ECG (telecardiology), and 115 patients (38.6%) had not. The means of predischarge LVEF of the patients in the first and the second groups were 40.7 ± 10.4 and 40.6 ± 11.2, respectively (P = 0.946). The mean of the probability of 6-month mortality based on GRACE score in the first group was significantly less than that of the second group (P = 0.004). Analyses of multivariable ordinal logistic regression showed that 6-month mortality severity risk in the second group was 1.5 times more than the first group (95% confidence interval 0.8–2.6), although this difference was not statistically significant (P = 0.199). CONCLUSIONS: It is likely that prehospital telecardiology, with shortening FMC to balloon time result in reducing probability 6-month mortality in STEMI patients who undergone PPCI. However, the process of telecardiology had no effect on predischarge LVEF in the current study.
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Assessment of the carotid artery Doppler flow time in patients with acute upper gastrointestinal bleeding p. 35
Sema Karadadas, Şeref Kerem Çorbacacıoǧlu, Yunsur Çevik, Seda Daǧar, Emine Emektar
INTRODUCTION: Because of the subjectivity and ambiguity of the noninvasive measurements and limited use of invasive ones, there is an impending need for a real-time, fast, inexpensive, and reproducible noninvasive measurement method in acute upper gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding with active bleeding in emergency services. AIMS: In this study, we aimed to evaluate the effect of bedside carotid artery flow time (CFT) measurement before and after the passive leg raising (PLR) maneuver on the determination of active bleeding in patients admitted to the emergency department (ED) with upper GI bleeding. MATERIALS AND METHODS: This prospective case–control study was conducted in the ED of a training and research hospital with upper GI bleeding. Patients were placed in the supine position to perform bedside carotid Doppler ultrasonography before starting treatment. CFT, corrected CFT (CFTc), and carotid artery Doppler flow velocity were measured. After then performed PLR, the same parameters were measured again. RESULTS: A total of 94 patients, including 50 patients with GI bleeding and 44 healthy volunteers as control group were included in the study. CFT and CFTc were shorter in the patient group than the control group (P < 0.001, P = 0.004, respectively). After PLR, there were statistically significant differences in change in the CFT (ΔCFT) and change in the corrected CFT (ΔCFTc) between the groups (P = 0.001, P < 0.001). There were also statistically significant differences in ΔCFT and ΔCFT between the patients with active bleeding and the nonbleeding ones (P = 0.01, P = 0.005, respectively). Area under curve to detect active bleeding for ΔCFT and ΔCFTc were calculated as 0.801 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 0.65–0.95) and 0.778 (95% CI: 0.63–0.91), respectively. CONCLUSION: The corrected carotid Doppler flow time measurements in patients with GI bleeding at the time of presenting to the emergency department can be helpful to interpret the active bleeding.
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A rare condition in the third trimester of pregnancy: Ovarian torsion p. 42
Halil Yildirim, Serife Ozdinc
Ovarian torsion (OT) during pregnancy is a rare condition that can cause maternal and fetal morbidity. Although the etiology of the disease is not fully understood, predisposing factors include increased ovarian size, free mobility, and long pedicle. The incidence of the disease increases after ovarian stimulation for the treatment of fertility. Diagnostic imaging modalities include ultrasonography and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). A 28-year-old woman with a 33-week pregnancy presented to our emergency department with acute, severe left groin pain. According to the patient's declaration, she had her first pregnancy, which was acquired by intrauterine insemination in another center. Her vital signs were unremarkable except for tachycardia. Physical examination revealed guarding (défense musculaire) and rebound tenderness on the left lower quadrant of the abdomen. Laboratory and imaging studies were performed for the preliminary diagnosis of acute abdomen. She was diagnosed with OT and admitted to the department of obstetrics and gynecology. OT should be included in the differential diagnosis of patients with suspected acute abdomen in advanced stages of pregnancy. In addition, MRI should be used as an alternative diagnostic modality in patients with normal sonographic findings.
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Liraglutide overdose: A case report and an updated review p. 46
Sharafaldeen Bin Nafisah, Daliah Almatrafi, Khalid Al-Mulhim
Little is known about liraglutide overdose and in particular its association with hypoglycemia. The aim of this study was to report on an accidental case of liraglutide overdose and to review similar cases in the literature. Here, we report a case of a young female presented with an accidental injection of 18 mg of liraglutide subcutaneously. She presented with relative hypoglycemia with gastrointestinal symptoms that resembled pancreatitis. We concluded with several implications and policies targeting accidental injections from the use of such medication and similar subcutaneous medications in clinical practice.
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Barium sulfate aspiration: Is early bronchioalveolar lavage a life-saving procedure? p. 50
Amarjeet Kumar, Ajeet Kumar, Neeraj Kumar, Chandni Sinha, Jitendra Kumar Singh
Aspiration of barium sulfate is a well-known complication, occurring accidentally during contrast-enhanced examinations of the upper gastrointestinal system. Massive aspiration of contrast material causes mechanical obstruction that increases alveolar dead space leading to altered ventilation/perfusion (V/Q) ratio with secondary respiratory failure and death. The potential treatment strategies include early recognition of predisposing factors, pretreatment with antireflux medications, such as domperidone, correct choice of contrast media, and use of retroesophageal suction catheter during barium swallow study. We report a case of barium swallow aspiration, which was successfully managed by early institution of bronchioalveolar lavage (BAL) and positive pressure mechanical ventilation. Till date, BAL has not been recommended for the same, with studies showing it can worsen the clinical scenario.
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