Thursday, May 21, 2020

The Moral Dilemma of COVID-19

Image Credit: Pexels
Author: Andy Mayer, MD FAAEM
Editor-in-Chief Common Sense
Originally published: Common Sense
May/June 2020

Certainly, there is only one issue which is dominating all thoughts, prayers, and efforts on our planet right now and it is COVID-19. Hopefully where you are, your life and practice will only be incredibly inconvenienced and that your family, your community, and your hospital will be spared the worst of this pandemic. Many areas may be relatively spared by early social distancing and the shutdown of many aspects of daily life which until last month we took for granted. This crisis has brought to the forefront many ethical and moral dilemmas which our society and world need to face with open eyes and minds. Our medical capabilities in our modern prosperous society are currently been taxed past the breaking point in the hotspots of the COVID-19 pandemic. We need as a profession and as a society to consider the correct response to the complex and difficult decisions which physicians on the frontlines are now making or may eventually be facing where conditions are worse. Even if we manage to make it through this pandemic without running out of ventilators and do not lose too many talented and selfless healthcare professionals there may be a next time.

Friday, May 8, 2020

Avalanche Resuscitation in the Emergency Department


Image Credit: Wikipedia
This post was peer reviewed.
Click to learn more.
Authors: Vivek Abraham, MS4
Medical Student
Uniformed Services University F. Edward Hebert School of Medicine

Ivan Yue, MS4
Medical Student
Uniformed Services University F. Edward Hebert School of Medicine
AAEM/RSA Publications and Social Media Committee

Alexander Li, MS4
Medical Student
Uniformed Services University F. Edward Hebert School of Medicine

Introduction
Avalanches are among the most feared events to occur in mountainous areas. Although the morbidity and mortality statistics are underreported worldwide, in North America and Europe combined there are roughly 140 avalanche-related deaths per year.[1,2] The majority of victims include snowboarders, skiers, mountaineers, and snowmobilers. With more people seeking to participate in snow sports or explore the mountains as part of expeditions, preparing to treat avalanche-related injuries is essential for an emergency physician working or traveling near a mountainous area. This article details the resuscitation guidelines that physicians can implement for those who fall victim to an avalanche as well as recommendations for mitigating avalanche exposure risk.