Pain Myth

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In my standard talk urging paramedics to be generous with pain management, I have a section called pain myths. One of the myths is entitled Fear of Creating Addicts On the powerpoint I have two pictures, one of an all-American housewife, the other of a skanky drug-addled prostitute. Here is the text from the slide: […]

Christmas Voices

“Jesus was here today. Glory Be. Brothers and sisters! Good God, we have witnessed thy presence. Let us all say Hallelujah, Hallelujah!” A woman called 911 and said she hadn’t seen her neighbor all day, and no one would answer her neighbor’s apartment door. The fire department broke the door open with an axe handle […]

Same Old Song and Dance

When couples get old, they communicate with fewer words or sometimes just a look. I am feeling that way about my EMS reports at the ED. Where I used to rattle off every detail I could think of (from brand of cereal they had for breakfast to the number and locations of the moles they […]

10 Cardiac Arrests!

I once did 10 cardiac arrests in one day. They were all v-fib arrests. I managed each code from the moment I arrived to find CPR in progress to the moment the patients were whisked off to the cardiac cath lab. I got 10 successful ET tubes, and despite the studies that show ET intubation […]


On Sports Radio this morning they were talking about the decline of three sports legends – Tiger Woods, Peyton Manning and Kobe Bryant. The radio host, a retired athlete himself, was saying how no one who hadn’t played professional sports could possibly understand what these three were going through. He said they dedicated their lives […]

Why You Should Go to an EMS Conference

You should attend an EMS conference at least once in your career. My first exposure to an EMS conference was Connecticut’s state conference. I had only been an EMT a few years – my influences were limited to my excellent EMT instructor, and the great people I worked with at Eastern Ambulance, a small five […]

In Defense of ALS

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In our state (Connecticut), BLS (with sponsor hospital approval) can do the following life-saving interventions: Defibrillate with AED Give Epinephrine in Anaphylaxis Apply CPAP to Severe Respiratory Distress Give Narcan to Hypoventilating Opiate Overdoses Give ASA to Chest Pain. Transmit 12-lead ECG Speed Trauma and Stroke Patients to the Hospital Here’s what They Can’t Do: […]

New England Paramedic Treatment Guidelines

Many years ago here in Connecticut each of the hospitals in the state had their own set of treatment guidelines for the paramedics they sponsored. In our company some of our medics were sponsored by Hartford Hospital, others by Saint Francis Hospital.* Each hospital had a different set of guidelines, even though their medics worked […]

Passive Ventilation Study

The main question left in the wake of the study,Trial of Continuous or Interrupted Chest Compressions during CPR, that dominated the news coming out of the American Heart Association’s 2015 Scientific Sessions Conference in Orlando, Florida this past week, is “How does passive ventilation compare with positive pressure ventilation in the early stages of cardiac […]

Continuous Cardiac Compressions Come Under Scrutiny

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Several years ago studies out of Arizona and Wisconsin trumpeted continuous cardiac compressions, known as CCC or sometimes known as CCR (cardiocerebral resuscitation), as offering increased survival for out of hospital cardiac arrest. Neurologically intact survival from witnessed vfib arrests increased by 250-300%. For the first several cycles of CPR stop compressions only to shock, […]

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