Understanding OPQRST

After my post/rant about the overuse and misuse of the DCAP BTLS TIC acronym in EMS education, I was asked the question, " Well, are there any acronyms that you do find useful?" And the answer is … [Read more...]

Lessons I Learned From My First Cardiac Arrest

It strange to think that it's been almost 20 years since the first time I did CPR. I still remember it so vividly. How the time flies. I was fortunate to have good mentors and teachers in my early … [Read more...]

What Is GHB Anyway?

Let's face it, there are a whole bunch of street drugs out there that we as EMS caregivers should understand. While we can't always be expected to identify the exact drug a patient has ingested. We do … [Read more...]

Learning DCAPBTLS (A word of advice)

I first heard the BCAPBTLS acronym sometime around 1998 while helping a group of EMT's practice their skills. I hadn't been involved in EMT education for several years and I had missed the whole … [Read more...]

Basic Functions of Abdominal Organs

Most EMT level providers are square on the primary function of the stomach. We can name several things our liver is doing for us and we get the whole kidney concept as well. But when we start drifting … [Read more...]

Test For Unconsciousness: The Face Flick

Sometimes, when we get on that outer boundary of established medical practices we start running in to controversy. As an author, and a bit of a non-conformist, I love controversy. One area that falls … [Read more...]

What Is Nystagmus?

When we think of testing for nystagmus, medical personnel and lay people alike, we tend to think of the horizontal gaze nystagmus test performed by police officers as part of … [Read more...]

Five Assessment Findings That Should Concern You

Did you ever watch the old Star Trek TV show? No of course you didn't, but this is just you and me talking here right? OK, remember when something would threaten the ship. The captain's first response … [Read more...]

Rapid Diagnosis: Pinpoint Pupils

Abnormally constricted or "pinpoint" pupils are a great finding for our rapid diagnosis series. There are many things that can cause the pupil to abnormally dilate. Very few things will make the pupil … [Read more...]

Rapid Diagnosis: Vomiting Blood

The dispatcher reports that the patient is vomiting blood. Hemataemesis if you want to be technical about it. It could be a whole bunch of things right? ... Well yes it could. Before you e-mail me to … [Read more...]