The latest medical research on Emergency Medicine

The research magnet gathers the latest research from around the web, based on your specialty area. Below you will find a sample of some of the most recent articles from reputable medical journals about emergency medicine gathered by our medical AI research bot.

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Prognostic findings for ICU admission in patients with COVID-19 pneumonia: baseline and follow-up chest CT and the added value of artificial intelligence.

Emergency Radiology

Infection with SARS-CoV-2 has dominated discussion and caused global healthcare and economic crisis over the past 18 months. Coronavirus disease 19...

Comparison of quick Pitt to quick sofa and sofa scores for scoring of severity for patients with urinary tract infection.

Internal and emergency medicine

Quick Pitt (qPitt), which includes temperature, systolic blood pressure, respiratory rate, cardiac arrest, and mental status, is a new prognostic s...

Comparison and outcomes of emergency department presentations with respiratory disorders among Australian indigenous and non-indigenous patients.

BMC Emergency Medicine

There is sparse evidence in the literature assessing emergency department presentation with respiratory disorders among Indigenous patients. The objective of this study was to evaluate the clinical characteristics and outcomes for Indigenous Australians in comparison to non-Indigenous patients presenting to Emergency Department (ED) with respiratory disorders.

In this study, two non-contiguous one-month study periods during wet (January) and dry (August) season were reported on, and differences in demographics, respiratory diagnosis, hospital admission, length of hospital stay, re-presentation to hospital after discharge and mortality between Australian Indigenous and non-Indigenous patients was assessed.

There were a total of 528 respiratory ED presentations, 258 (49%) during wet and 270 (51%) in dry season, from 477 patients (52% female and 40% Indigenous). The majority of ED presentations (84%) were self-initiated, with a difference between Indigenous (80%) and non-Indigenous (88%) presentations. Indigenous presentations recorded a greater proportion of transfers from another healthcare facility compared to non-Indigenous presentations (11% vs. 1%). Less than half of presentations (42%) resulted in admission to the ward with no difference by Indigenous status. Lower respiratory tract infections were the most common cause of presentation (41%), followed by airway exacerbation (31%) which was more commonly seen among Indigenous (34%) than non-Indigenous (28%) presentations. Almost 20% of Indigenous patients reported multiple presentations to ED compared to 1% of non-Indigenous patients, though mortality on follow up did not differ (22% for both).

The results of this study may be an avenue to explore possibilities of implementing programs that may be helpful to reduce preventable ED presentation and recurrent hospitalisations among Indigenous population.

Assessing the quality of patient handovers between ambulance services and emergency department - development and validation of the emergency department human factors in handover tool.

BMC Emergency Medicine

Patient handover between prehospital care and the emergency department plays a key role in patient safety. Therefore, we aimed to create a validated tool for measuring quality of communication and interprofessional relations during handover in this specific setting.

Based on a theoretical framework a comprehensive item pool on information transfer and human factors in emergency department handovers was created and refined in a modified Delphi survey involving clinical experts. Based on a pre-test, items were again revised. The resulting Emergency Department Human Factors in Handover tool (ED-HFH) was validated in a field test at the emergency department of a German university hospital from July to December 2017. The ED-HFH was completed by emergency department and ambulance service staff participating in handovers and by an external observer. Description of item characteristics, exploratory factor analysis, analyses on internal consistency and interrater reliability by intraclass-correlation. Construct validity was analysed by correlation with an overall rating on quality of the handover.

The draft of the ED-HFH contained 24 items, 90 of 102 eligible staff members participated in the field test completing 133 questionnaires on 38 observed handovers. Four items were deleted after analysis of item characteristics. Factor analysis supported a single factor explaining 39% of variance in the items. Therefore, a sum-score was calculated with a possible range between 14 and 70. The median value of the sum-score in the sample was 61.5, Cronbach's α was 0.83, intraclass-correlation was 0.52, the correlation with the overall rating of hand-over quality was ρ = 0.83 (p ≤ 0.001).

The ED-HFH showed its feasibility, reliability and validity as a measure of quality of information transfer and human factors in handovers between ambulance services  and the emergency department. It promises to be a useful tool for quality assurance and staff training.

Effectiveness of clotting factor replacement therapy after antivenom treatment on coagulopathic envenomation following green pit viper bites: a retrospective observational study.

BMC Emergency Medicine

Green pit vipers (GPVs), namely Trimeresurus albolabris and Trimeresurus stejnegeri accounts for most snakebites in Southern China. Green pit viper venom contains thrombin-like enzymes, resulting in defibrination syndrome. Using of clotting factor replacement after antivenom administration is controversial. The objective of this study was to investigate the effects of clotting factor replacement in coagulopathic patients with T. albolabris and T. stejnegeri bites after antivenom administration.

We retrospectively reviewed 123 patients who were bitten by T. albolabris and T. stejnegeri and were admitted to the Emergency Department of a hospital in Guangzhou, Southern China, from 2013 to 2019. Recovery of prothrombin time (PT) and fibrinogen level were compared among (1) fresh-frozen plasma (FFP) group; (2) cryoprecipitate (cryo) group; (3) FFP and cryo group; and (4) control group after antivenom administration.

The incidence of coagulopathy was 31%. Persistent and late coagulopathy were the most common patterns among four groups. The median reduction in PT was 20.1 ± 31.2 s for FFP and cryo group. The median increase in fibrinogen level was very small: 0.05 ± 0.20 g/L for FFP group, 0.09 ± 0.37 g/L for cryo group and 0.07 ± 0.31 g/L for FFP and cryo group, respectively. The percentage of unimproved PT was markedly higher in the FFP and cryo group than the control group (P = 0.01 by log-rank test, P = 0.02 by Gehan-Breslow-Wilcoxon test). The percentage of unimproved fibrinogen level tended to be worse in the FFP and cryo group than the control group, but the different was marginal (P = 0.05 by Gehan-Breslow-Wilcoxon test, P = 0.07 by log-rank test). A total of 7.8% (7/90) of the patients in the clotting factor replacement groups developed anaphylaxis and heart failure.

There is no improvement in coagulopathy profile in patients with T. albolabris and T. stejnegeri bites who received clotting factor replacement after antivenom administration. But the results from GPVs may not be generalized to other species of venomous snakes.

Association between delays to patient admission from the emergency department and all-cause 30-day mortality.

Emergency Medicine Journal

Delays to timely admission from emergency departments (EDs) are known to harm patients.

To assess and quantify the increased risk of death resulting from delays to inpatient admission from EDs, using Hospital Episode Statistics and Office of National Statistics data in England.

A cross-sectional, retrospective observational study was carried out of patients admitted from every type 1 (major) ED in England between April 2016 and March 2018. The primary outcome was death from all causes within 30 days of admission. Observed mortality was compared with expected mortality, as calculated using a logistic regression model to adjust for sex, age, deprivation, comorbidities, hour of day, month, previous ED attendances/emergency admissions and crowding in the department at the time of the attendance.

Between April 2016 and March 2018, 26 738 514 people attended an ED, with 7 472 480 patients admitted relating to 5 249 891 individual patients, who constituted the study's dataset. A total of 433 962 deaths occurred within 30 days. The overall crude 30-day mortality rate was 8.71% (95% CI 8.69% to 8.74%). A statistically significant linear increase in mortality was found from 5 hours after time of arrival at the ED up to 12 hours (when accurate data collection ceased) (p<0.001). The greatest change in the 30-day standardised mortality ratio was an 8% increase, occurring in the patient cohort that waited in the ED for more than 6 to 8 hours from the time of arrival.

Delays to hospital inpatient admission for patients in excess of 5 hours from time of arrival at the ED are associated with an increase in all-cause 30-day mortality. Between 5 and 12 hours, delays cause a predictable dose-response effect. For every 82 admitted patients whose time to inpatient bed transfer is delayed beyond 6 to 8 hours from time of arrival at the ED, there is one extra death.

Pediatric skull fractures: could suture contact be a sign of abuse?

Emergency Radiology

Skull fractures in infants and young children can occur as a result of both accidental trauma and abuse. 1/3 of children with abuse-related head trauma and 1/5 of children with abuse-related fractures were overlooked during the initial evaluation. In this study, we aim to investigate the prevalence of skull fractures that come into contact with the suture in head traumas caused by accidents and abuse, and also to see if contact of the fracture line with the suture could be used as a sign for abuse in the pediatric population.

Forry-four patients with head trauma were retrospectively assessed between January 2010 and June 2020 and were confirmed to have fractures on a brain CT. Patient age, gender, and head injury type were recorded. The fracture site, location and number, the contact of the fracture line with the suture, the name, and number of the suture it came into contact with were determined.

Twenty-eight skull fractures in 22 children with a diagnosis of child abuse and 25 skull fractures in 22 children due to accidental trauma were evaluated in the same age and gender range. Eighteen (64%) of 28 abuse-related skull fractures were in contact with two or more sutures. Two (8%) of 25 accident-related fractures were related to two or more sutures. Abuse-related fractures had a significantly higher suture contact rate than accident-related fractures (p = 0.007).

Contact with two or more sutures of a skull fracture is a finding related to abuse rather than accident.

Transfer patient imaging: discordances between community and subspecialist emergency radiologists.

Emergency Radiology

To determine the rate and nature of significant discordances between community and subspecialist emergency radiologists' interpretations of cross-sectional exams performed on patients transferred to our trauma center.

Outside hospital CT and MRI exams performed on transfer trauma patients are routinely overread by subspecialist emergency radiologists, specifying either concordance or discordance with the interpretation by the community radiologist. We evaluated the discordant reports for clinical significance, defined as an additional finding or difference in interpretation which was likely to affect patient management. The total rate of significant discordances, rate by modality, rate by body region, and rate per patient transferred were calculated. The most common errors were identified, and the distribution of errors among individual community radiologists was examined.

9175 exams were reviewed. Significant discordances were encountered in 4.1% of exams: 3.9% for CT and 6.7% for MRI; 5.1% for head and neck exams, 3.3% for spine, 3.8% for torso, and 2.9% for extremities. The discordance rate per patient transferred was 7.7%. The most common discordances involved missing injuries to the cranio-cervical junction, missing or misinterpreting vascular injuries in the neck, and incompletely characterizing facial fractures. Discordances were evenly spread among 220 community radiologists.

There is frequent discordance between community and emergency radiologists' interpretations of CT and MRI exams, leading to a change in transferred patient management. Thus, trauma center radiologists provide added value overreading these patients' exams. It is difficult to predict which patients or exams will contain discordances, justifying routine overreading of all such exams.

Terrorist Attacks against Hospitals: World-Wide Trends and Attack Types.

Prehospital and Disaster Medicine

Analysts have warned on multiple occasions that hospitals are potential soft targets for terrorist attacks. Such attacks will have far-reaching consequences, including decreased accessibility, possible casualties, and fear among people. The extent, incidence, and characteristics of terrorist attacks against hospitals are unknown. Therefore, the objective of this study was to identify and to characterize terrorist attacks against hospitals reported to the Global Terrorism Database (GTD) over a 50-year period.

The GTD was used to search for all terrorist attacks against hospitals from 1970-2019. Analyses were performed on temporal factors, location, attack and weapon type, and number of casualties or hostages. Chi-square tests were performed to evaluate trends over time and differences in attack types per world region.

In total, 454 terrorist attacks against hospitals were identified in 61 different countries. Of these, 78 attacks targeted a specific person within the hospital, about one-half (52.6%) involved medical personnel. There was an increasing trend in yearly number of attacks from 2008 onwards, with a peak in 2014 (n = 41) and 2015 (n = 41). With 179 incidents, the "Middle East & North Africa" was the most heavily hit region of the world, followed by "South Asia" with 125 attacks. Bombings and explosions were the most common attack type (n = 270), followed by 77 armed assaults. Overall, there were 2,746 people injured and 1,631 fatalities. In three incidents, hospitals were identified as secondary targets (deliberate follow-up attack on a hospital after a primary incident elsewhere).

This analysis of the GTD identified 454 terrorist attacks against hospitals over a 50-year period. It demonstrates that the threat is real, especially in recent years and in world regions where terrorism is prevalent. The findings of this study may help to create or further improve contingency plans for a scenario wherein the hospital becomes a target of terrorism.

Staff Augmentation during Disaster Response.

Prehospital and Disaster Medicine

This article outlines a disaster medicine team response to the Texas-Mexico border during a coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) surge. The team con...

Experiences of healthcare providers with a novel emergency response intubation team during COVID-19.

Canadian Journal of Emergency Medicine

In the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, there were significant concerns about the infectious risks of intubation to healthcare providers. In response, a dedicated emergency response intubation team (ERIT) consisting of anesthesiologists and allied health providers was instituted for our emergency department (ED). Given the high-risk nature of intubations and the new interprofessional team dynamics, we sought to assess health-care provider experiences and potential areas of improvement.

Surveys were distributed to healthcare providers at the University Health Network, a quaternary healthcare centre in Toronto, Canada, which includes two urban EDs seeing over 128,000 patients per year. Participants included ED physicians and nurses, anesthesiologists, anesthesia assistants, and operating room nurses. The survey included free-text questions. Responses underwent thematic analysis using grounded theory and were independently coded by two authors to generate descriptive themes. Discrepancies were resolved with a third author. Descriptive themes were distilled through an inductive, iterative process until fewer main themes emerged.

A total of 178 surveys were collected (68.2% response rate). Of these, 123 (69%) participated in one or more ERIT activations. Positive aspects included increased numbers of staff to assist, increased intubation expertise, improved safety, and good team dynamics within the ERIT team. Challenges included a loss of scope (primarily ED physicians and nurses) and unfamiliar workflows, perceived delays to ERIT team arrival or patient intubation, role confusion, handover concerns, and communication challenges between ED and ERIT teams. Perceived opportunities for improvement included interprofessional training, developing clear guidelines on activation, inter-team role clarification, and guidelines on handover processes post-intubation.

Healthcare providers perceived that a novel interprofessional collaboration for intubations of COVID-19 patients presented both benefits and challenges. Opportunities for improvement centred around interprofessional training, shared decision making between teams, and structured handoff processes.

Maximum movement and cumulative movement (travel) to inform our understanding of secondary spinal cord injury and its application to collar use in self-extrication.

Scandinavian Journal of

Motor vehicle collisions remain a common cause of spinal cord injury. Biomechanical studies of spinal movement often lack "real world" context and applicability. Additional data may enhance our understanding of the potential for secondary spinal cord injury. We propose the metric 'travel' (total movement) and suggest that our understanding of movement related risk of injury could be improved if travel was routinely reported. We report maximal movement and travel for collar application in vehicle and subsequent self-extrication.

Biomechanical data on application of cervical collar with the volunteer sat in a vehicle were collected using Inertial Measurement Units on 6 healthy volunteers. Maximal movement and travel are reported. These data and a re-analysis of previously published work is used to demonstrate the utility of travel and maximal movement in the context of self-extrication.

Data from a total of 60 in-vehicle collar applications across three female and three male volunteers was successfully collected for analysis. The mean age across participants was 50.3 years (range 28-68) and the BMI was 27.7 (range 21.5-34.6). The mean maximal anterior-posterior movement associated with collar application was 2.3 mm with a total AP travel of 4.9 mm. Travel (total movement) for in-car application of collar and self-extrication was 9.5 mm compared to 9.4 mm travel for self-extrication without a collar.

We have demonstrated the application of 'travel' in the context of self-extrication. Total travel is similar across self-extricating healthy volunteers with and without a collar. We suggest that where possible 'travel' is collected and reported in future biomechanical studies in this and related areas of research. It remains appropriate to apply a cervical collar to self-extricating casualties when the clinical target is that of movement minimisation.