Although our ability to manage strokes in the field is minimal, EMS serves a critical role in obtaining a history of the illness - specifically a patient’s last known normal.
What changes in the AHA/ASA 2018 guidelines for stroke care are important to EMS providers?
Many of the changes made to the stroke management guidelines for 2018 are applicable only to the in-hospital setting. However, there are a few changes that have been made in regards to EMS identification and management of stroke patients in the pre-hospital setting.
The key changes to the guidelines have to do primarily with early identification of strokes using some tested stroke...
Beck’s Triad is a set of three cardiovascular signs that indicate cardiac tamponade. These three signs got their name from the American cardiothoracic surgeon, Dr. Claude Beck, in 1935. In order to fully make sense of Beck’s triad and what it means, it's essential to understand cardiac tamponade.
Cardiac tamponade is an acute condition in which blood surrounds the heart, putting so much pressure on it that it can no longer effectively pump blood. You can think of it essentially as something squeezing the heart until it stops.
Surrounding the heart, there is a pericardial sac that is made up of two layers. Together, these two layers make up the...