E: ENDO

After your ABCDs, you should consider E: endocrine-metabolic, using the mnemonic ENDO–Electrolyes, Normothermia, Determine acid-base, consider hOrmones. This starts at the bedside with vital signs (glucose, temp), moves on to full electrolytes and acid/base considerations, and finally considers hormones (which might require treatment even though lab results might not be available). ELECTROLYTES Glucose -hypoglycemia: if you have…

D: NEUROLOGIC

In the ABCDs, D is for disability or neurological emergencies. Think NEUROLOGIC to consider what could be affecting the brain (NEURO), spinal cord (L) and peripheral nervous system (OGIC): Neuron seizure: EEG type: tonic-clonic, absense, myoclonic, atonic, non-convulsive status primary vs secondary (hypoxia, hypoglycemia, hyponatremia, meningitis, brain mass/bleed, pre-eclampsia, toxic/withdrawal) treat: manage aiway, give O2,…

C: CARDIOVASCULAR

In working through your ABCs, the C is for circulation. In the ER we need a rapid and systematic way of thinking about the different components of the cardiovascular system and the different emergencies related to them. Think of the CARDIOVASCULAR system, a mnemonic that reinforces pathophysiology–including electrical rhythm (C), pump (ARDIO), volume (VASC), and vascular…

B: CHEST

In the ABCs we consider Airway and then Breathing. There are all sorts of lungs diseases, including sarcoid and ILD. But in the ER our focus is on a few main categories: lung collapse, hyperinflation from obstructive lung disease, or lungs filled with fluid, pus or tumour. Think of CHEST: Collapse (pneumothorax) Hyperinflate (asthma/COPD) Effusion/edema…

A: Airway = ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOP

Emergency Medicine starts with the ABCs, and the “A” means two questions for every patient: 1) Apply c-collar (to protect cervical spine in the trauma patient)? and 2) Airway management? For the second question we need to be aware of the conditions that can directly affect the airway. These should be considered in every patient…