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Conducted electrical weapons (CEWs), including Thomas A. Swift Electric Rifles (TASERs), are increasingly used by law enforcement officers (LEOs) in the US and world-wide. Little is known about the experience of Emergency Medical Service (EMS) providers with these incidents.
This study describes EMS encounters with documented TASER use and barb removal, characteristics of resulting injuries, and treatment provided.
This retrospective study used five combined, consecutive National Emergency Medical Services Information System (NEMSIS; Salt Lake City, Utah USA) public-release datasets (2011-2015). All EMS activations with documented TASER barb removal were included. Descriptive analyses were carried out.
The study included 648 EMS activations with documented TASER barb removal, yielding a prevalence rate of 4.55 per 1,000,000 EMS activations. Patients had a mean age of 35.9 years (SD=18.2). The majority were males (80.2%) and mainly white (71.3%). Included EMS activations were mostly in urban or suburban areas (78.3%). Over one-half received Advanced Life Support (ALS)-level of service (58.2%). The most common chief complaint reported by dispatch were burns (29.9%), followed by traumatic injury (16.1%). Patients had pain (45.6%) or wound (17.2%) as a primary symptom, with most having possible injury (77.8%). Reported causes of injury were mainly fire and flames (29.8%) or excessive heat (16.7%). The provider’s primary impressions were traumatic injury (66.3%) and behavioral/psychiatric disorder (16.8%). Only one cardiac arrest (0.2%) was reported. Over one-half of activations resulted in patient transports (56.3%), mainly to a hospital (91.2%). These encounters required routine EMS care (procedures and medications). An increase in the prevalence of EMS activations with documented TASER barb removal over the study period was not significant (P=.27).
At present, EMS activations with documented TASER barb removal are rare. Routine care by EMS is expected, and life-threatening emergencies are not common. All EMS providers should be familiar with local policies and procedures related to TASER use and barb removal.
El SayedM, El TawilC, TamimH, MailhacA, MannNC. Emergency Medical Services Experience With Barb Removal After Taser Use By Law Enforcement: A Descriptive National Study. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2019;34(1):38–45.
To (i) estimate the consumption of minimally processed, processed and ultra-processed foods in a sample of Lebanese adults; (ii) explore patterns of intakes of these food groups; and (iii) investigate the association of the derived patterns with cardiometabolic risk.
Cross-sectional survey. Data collection included dietary assessment using an FFQ and biochemical, anthropometric and blood pressure measurements. Food items were categorized into twenty-five groups based on the NOVA food classification. The contribution of each food group to total energy intake (TEI) was estimated. Patterns of intakes of these food groups were examined using exploratory factor analysis. Multivariate logistic regression analysis was used to evaluate the associations of derived patterns with cardiometabolic risk factors.
Greater Beirut area, Lebanon.
Adults ≥18 years (n 302) with no prior history of chronic diseases.
Of TEI, 36·53 and 27·10 % were contributed by ultra-processed and minimally processed foods, respectively. Two dietary patterns were identified: the ‘ultra-processed’ and the ‘minimally processed/processed’. The ‘ultra-processed’ consisted mainly of fast foods, snacks, meat, nuts, sweets and liquor, while the ‘minimally processed/processed’ consisted mostly of fruits, vegetables, legumes, breads, cheeses, sugar and fats. Participants in the highest quartile of the ‘minimally processed/processed’ pattern had significantly lower odds for metabolic syndrome (OR=0·18, 95 % CI 0·04, 0·77), hyperglycaemia (OR=0·25, 95 % CI 0·07, 0·98) and low HDL cholesterol (OR=0·17, 95 % CI 0·05, 0·60).
The study findings may be used for the development of evidence-based interventions aimed at encouraging the consumption of minimally processed foods.
Early activation and use of Emergency Medical Services (EMS) are associated with improved patient outcomes in EMS priority conditions in developed EMS systems. This study describes patterns of EMS use and identifies predictors of EMS utilization in EMS priority conditions in Lebanon
This was a cross-sectional study of a random sample of adult patients presenting to the emergency department (ED) of a tertiary care center in Beirut with the following EMS priority conditions: chest pain, major trauma, respiratory distress, cardiac arrest, respiratory arrest, and airway obstruction. Patient/proxy survey (20 questions) and chart review were completed. The responses to survey questions were “disagree,” “neutral,” or “agree” and were scored as one, two, or three with three corresponding to higher likelihood of EMS use. A total scale score ranging from 20 to 60 was created and transformed from 0% to 100%. Data were analyzed based on mode of presentation (EMS vs other).
Among the 481 patients enrolled, only 112 (23.3%) used EMS. Mean age for study population was 63.7 years (SD=18.8 years) with 56.5% males. Mean clinical severity score (Emergency Severity Index [ESI]) was 2.5 (SD=0.7) and mean pain score was 3.1 (SD=3.5) at ED presentation. Over one-half (58.8%) needed admission to hospital with 21.8% to an intensive care unit care level and with a mortality rate of 7.3%. Significant associations were found between EMS use and the following variables: severity of illness, degree of pain, familiarity with EMS activation, previous EMS use, perceived EMS benefit, availability of EMS services, trust in EMS response times and treatment, advice from family, and unavailability of immediate private mode of transport (P≤.05). Functional screening, or requiring full assistance (OR=4.77; 95% CI, 1.85-12.29); acute symptoms onset ≤ one hour (OR=2.14; 95% CI, 1.08-4.26); and higher scale scores (OR=2.99; 95% CI, 2.20-4.07) were significant predictors of EMS use. Patients with lower clinical severity (OR=0.53; 95% CI, 0.35-0.81) and those with chest pain (OR=0.05; 95% CI, 0.02-0.12) or respiratory distress (OR=0.15; 95% CI, 0.07-0.31) using cardiac arrest as a reference were less likely to use EMS.
Emergency Medical Services use in EMS priority conditions in Lebanon is low. Several predictors of EMS use were identified. Emergency Medical Services initiatives addressing underutilization should result from this proposed assessment of the perspective of the EMS system’s end user.
El SayedM, TamimH, Al-Hajj ChehadehA, KazziAA. Emergency Medical Services Utilization in EMS Priority Conditions in Beirut, Lebanon. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2016;31(6):621–627.
Emergency Medical Services (EMS) preparedness and availability of essential medications are important to reduce morbidity and mortality from mass-casualty incidents (MCIs).
This study describes prehospital medication administration during MCIs by different EMS service levels.
The US National EMS Public-Release Research Dataset maintained by the National Emergency Medical Services Information System (NEMSIS) was used to carry out the study. Emergency Medical Services activations coded as MCI at dispatch, or by EMS personnel, were included. The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) service level was used for the level of service provided. A descriptive analysis of medication administration by EMS service level was carried out.
Among the 19,831,189 EMS activations, 53,334 activations had an MCI code, of which 26,110 activations were included. There were 8,179 (31.3%) Advanced Life Support (ALS), 5,811 (22.3%) Basic Life Support (BLS), 399 (1.5%) Air Medical Transport (AMT; fixed or rotary), and 38 (0.2%) Specialty Care Transport (SCT) activations. More than 80 different medications from 18 groups were reported. Seven thousand twenty-one activations (26.9%) had at least one medication administered. Oxygen was most common (16.3%), followed by crystalloids (6.9%), unknown (5.2%), analgesics (3.2%) mainly narcotics, antiemetics (1.5%), cardiac/vasopressors/inotropes (0.9%), bronchodilators (0.9%), sedatives (0.8%), and vasodilators/antihypertensives (0.7%). Overall, medication administration rates and frequencies of medications groups significantly varied between EMS service levels (P<.01) except for “Analgesia (other)” (P=.40) and “Pain medications (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug; NSAID)” (P=.07).
Medications are administered frequently in MCIs, mainly Oxygen, crystalloids, and narcotic pain medications. Emergency Medical Services systems can use the findings of this study to better prepare their stockpiles for MCIs.
El SayedM, TamimH, MannNC. Description of Medication Administration by Emergency Medical Services during Mass-casualty Incidents in the United States. Prehosp Disaster Med. 2016;31(2):141–149.
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