Emergency Services: Doing Things Right the First Time

As an emergency service provider you are faced with the heavy burden of making life-saving decisions in the field. You have undergone the necessary training and certification to be where you are now in your career but by all means you do not know everything as emergency situations tend to be dynamic in nature. It is important to do things right the first time as in most cases, there is no second chance because you are the second chance for saving the life of the patient.

Evaluate Prior to beginning

According to child defibrillator package experts, the most common mistakes EMTs make may be traced back to the initial moments when they arrived on scene. More often than not, the decision maker hurriedly tried to perform tasks immediately as opposed to evaluating the situation first. A true sign of an experienced EMT is the ability or open-mindedness to give a thorough evaluation of the situation prior to initiating courses of action.  If the situation needs immediate attention like if the patient is choking, bleeding out or in cardio respiratory arrest then by all means immediate action is warranted. However, one must be able to look into one’s self and ask if one is doing the right procedures. What may be very obvious in the first few moments in the scene may be utterly wrong.

When Not Sure, Perform Comforting Tasks

In the field, you are faced with a myriad of situations some of which you have totally no control over. According to Philips FRX supplies providers it is better to do something that you know will do well and start performing it rather than try to attempt something totally ambiguous.  Being an experienced EMT calls for knowing how to figure out the right things as opposed to rushing to perform something that may harm the patient. 

Man Up to the Problem and Do Something Before its Too Late

There are times that it can be very difficult to admit that your team made the wrong decision or is moving in the wrong direction. It is not uncommon to commit to a wrong approach even though you realize that it is wrong already. It is important to have the ability to man up to the issue, admit it and re-evaluate the situation so that immediate changes can be done before it is too late.

Survival Tips Every Paramedic Needs to Know

As an emergency service provider one already has the necessary skillset to deliver life saving procedures to almost any patient they encounter. However, there are moments when you think all the training in the world did not prepare you for what you will encounter in the field.  Here are some survival tips every paramedic needs to know.

Be Optimistic

Philips HeartStart AED packages experts recommend paramedics to check their pessimism at the door. Patients do survive cardiac arrest even those that are in asystole still has a chance.  However, some EMTs become pessimistic when the going gets tough and reduce expectations of survival when they encounter cardiac rhythms with very low survival rates. It is important to keep in mind that YOU are the patient’s only hope to survive at that point. While resuscitation statistics say otherwise, still a positive and optimistic attitude will make a whole lot of difference to someone whose very existence is in your hands.

Always be Thinking a few Steps Ahead

We all know that anything can happen during a cardiac arrest scenario. During resuscitation, cardiac rhythms do change dynamically which will require different approaches to treatment. As you work on reviving the patient, do think several steps ahead. This will enhance your efficiency as well as those of your team. For instance, ensuring that there are a few meds on ready standby, ensuring there is ready airway management equipment or staff for extracting the victim. Thinking a few steps ahead may just save your patient’s life.

It’s Not About You

As EMTs we have the knowledge and ability to provide advanced life-saving techniques and administer a plethora of medications that could save the patient’s life.  However, it is not the meds and the advanced equipment available at our disposal that can truly make the difference.  According to Philips HeartStart defibrillators experts,  the most essential thing we can offer  patients is the quality of basic life support care in this case the compressions, ventilations and the defibrillations.  Check your pride at the door and ensure advanced life support procedures do not hinder basic life support as nine out of ten scenarios the advanced life support can wait until the patient is stabilized.

The Basics of Cardiac Tamponade

Cardiac Tamponade occurs when there is compression of the heart due to the entry of fluid in the pericardial sac. The pericardial sac is a protective covering that surrounds the heart and allows the heart to expand naturally so that it can pump blood without any problem.  According to Philips AED packages providers, when fluid, pus or blood begin to collect and enters the sac, the heart is compressed and prevents it from being able to pump blood. Normally, the sac can hold only about 100 ml of fluid before the heart gives out.

Causes

One possible cause of cardiac Tamponade is a hormonal condition called hypothyroidism where gland is not able to produce thyroid hormones T3 and T4 necessary for metabolism and physiologic functioning.  However, this is not the most common cause. According to Philips FR3 supplies specialists, the most common cause is penetrating trauma to the heart. The condition may affect the heart directly or the blood vessels that supply it. What happens is that the blood floods the pericardial sac causing heart compression. Blunt traumatic injury to the chest is another cause therefore all trauma patients that appear to have some injury to the trunk needs to be assessed for this condition.

Symptoms

For doctors and emergency personnel, the diagnosis of cardiac Tamponade is a difficult one because there are many other conditions that present the same symptoms like tension pneumothorax which resembles some of the signs and symptoms seen in cardiac Tamponade.  Low blood pressure that is not related to blood loss is normally the first sign.  The patient also exhibits jugular venous distention and the heart sounds appear muffled upon auscultation.  This collection of symptoms is known as Beck’s triad.

Treatment

In the field there is not a lot paramedics can do to treat the problem. Usually, the treatment protocol calls for improving the low blood pressure and other symptoms of shock the patient is presenting and then transporting the patient as soon as possible to the nearest tertiary care institution.  The definitive treatment is to perform a procedure called pericardiocentesis.  The procedure calls for inserting a needle in the chest in order to remove the fluid that is compressing the heart under the guidance of ultrasound.

3 Heart Symptoms You Should Not Ignore

You may have seen it on the movies or on TV about a man suddenly clutching his chest and falling dead on the floor. However, not all heart issues come with crystal clear warning symptoms. As a matter of fact, some heart problems do not even involve any chest discomfort.  Here are 3 heart symptoms you should talk to your doctor about immediately.

Discomfort in the Chest

According to Philips HeartStart Defibrillator experts, chest discomfort is the most common sign that there is something wrong with your heart that requires immediate attention. If there is a blocked coronary artery you will begin to feel a heavy, tight pain in the chest resembling someone literally sitting on your chest region.  The symptoms could last a few minutes and may even occur when you are resting or doing something that requires physical exertion.

Pain in the stomach, Heartburn, Indigestion and Nausea

Many people suffering from a coronary episode develop some or all of the above symptoms.  Women more than men are more likely to report the symptoms noted above. While you can have an upset stomach for a lot of different reasons, the last of which is a heart condition, you need to be conscious of the fact that it is also included during a heart attack

Pain that Goes to the Arm

According to Philips Defibrillators experts, another important symptom of a heart attack that you should never ignore is pain that spreads to the left side of the body. The pain usually begins in the chest and then spreads to the left arm and back.

Lightheadedness

While there are many reasons that could cause you to feel dizzy or lightheaded, if the symptom occurs with some chest discomfort as well as feeling out of breath, call 911 immediately as you may be having a coronary episode. The reason for being lightheaded is attributed to your blood pressure dropping and the heart is unable to pump as it normally should.

Important Advice to Achieve a Healthy Heart

Each year millions of Americans die from heart related ailments so much so that it has already reached pandemic proportions. Poor lifestyle choices, food habits, smoking and stress all contribute to the development of heart disease. If you want to live longer check out some of the important advice below on how to achieve a healthy heart.

Go for 7 the lucky Number

According to Philips AED providers referencing a study on young and middle-aged adults that regularly slept 7 hours a night, had lesser calcium deposits in their arteries. Calcium deposits in the coronary arteries is an early sign of heart disease. Those that slept less than 5 hours or those who slept more than 9 hours had a greater chance of developing early stage heart problems. Moreover, the quality of sleep needs to be at par with the quantity. The same study also showed that adults that have good sleep quality had healthier coronary arteries compared to those that did not.

Maintain Normal Blood Pressure

Blood pressure measures the amount of pressure that is entering the blood vessels with each beat of the heart. Too high blood pressure creates additional force that tends to damage the walls of the arteries and creates tissue scarring.  This makes it more difficult for the heart to pump. If it does not the oxygen it needs, sections of it will deteriorate and die.

If you are not hypertensive, have your blood pressure checked every three to five years if you are in the ages of 18-39. For people 40 and above, yearly blood pressure checkups is mandatory.  Salt intake needs to be lessened drastically as well as alcohol consumption to no greater than one or two shots or glasses per day.

Get rid of the Saturated Fats

Saturated fats found mainly in meat and fat dairy products need to be lessened. Leaner cuts of meat and low fat alternatives are recommended. Trans fats need to be totally avoided as they only increase LDL or bad cholesterol in your system. According to automated external defibrillator experts, if it has been more than 5 years sine the last cholesterol checkup, it is time to have one immediately.