Everything you read here should be considered fiction. Patient rights will always be respected. Any resemblance to persons living or not is purely coincidental.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

EMT Class week 15 - Trauma Time!

So we've moved (too quickly, imho) through medical emergencies and have pulled in to trauma world.  Let the gross pictures begin!

This week we worked through Bleeding & Shock, and Soft-Tissue trauma.  Most of Bleeding/Shock was review from the First Responder course, albeit in more detail.  We went into a bit more than just the simple "pressure, elevate, more pressure" scenarios - looking at vessels in more detail, tourniquets, splinting, application of cold, and the ever-favorite pneumatic anti-shock garment (PASG).  Needless to say, it seems silly to be studying and potentially tested on something that has been all but removed from EMS.  (Yes, I realized the book is 5 years older than it's publication date, but NREMT may still have it in there on the test) That said, we just removed it from our protocols this year, so whatever.  PASG is more interesting to me in a historical sense anyhow, in that it was touted for so many years until studies were done that essentially disproved any good outcome.  Except of course in postpartum hemorrhage in rural South Africa...
(Detractors/believers can argue in comments - I'm not an expert by any stretch, but was tasked to do a literature search for the Pit Boss and was able to read twenty or so articles on the subject.  He presented his view to our Medical Director who then authorized removing MAST pants from our protocols.)

Then on to soft-tissue trauma.  Can sum this up pretty simply.  Gory.  Gross. Nauseating.
I mean, some great pictures out there...really.  For some reason soft-tissue trauma grosses me out pretty badly.  Maybe I just need to look at more pics and video to desensitize myself.  They only showed male genital trauma, but the internet is an easy place to search for this.  Does take you to some dodgy websites, though, and I doubt I will be doing any of these searches at work!  Thanks to AD for his electric fence penis burn.  OUCH!

The degloved arm still haunts me,  the avulsed penis, the crush injury to the hand, ugh.  Does one just need to be exposed to this?  Desensitized?  I'm really worried that I'll keel over at a patient's injury.  This would not be a good thing.  I'm generally decent with vomit, blood, poo, urine.  But there's some things I just need to be able to deal with.  Is this a skill that can be learned, or will I always feel like passing out?

On to week 16 - Musculoskeletal Trauma, and Trauma to the Head, Neck, and Spine.  Hope I survive this section.

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