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Approximately, 1.7 million individuals in the United States have been infected with SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for the novel coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19). This has disproportionately impacted adults, but many children have been infected and hospitalised as well. To date, there is not much information published addressing the cardiac workup and monitoring of children with COVID-19. Here, we share the approach to the cardiac workup and monitoring utilised at a large congenital heart centre in New York City, the epicentre of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States.
Introduction: Point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) has become standard practice in emergency departments ranging from remote rural hospitals to well-resourced academic centres. To facilitate quality assurance, the Canadian Association of Emergency Physicians (CAEP) recommends image archiving. Due in part to poor infrastructure and lack of a national standard, however, archiving remains uncommon. Our objective was to establish a minimum standard archiving protocol for the core emergency department POCUS indications. Methods: Itemization of potential archiving standards was created through an extensive literature review. An online, three-round, modified Delphi survey was conducted with the thirteen POCUS experts on the national CAEP Emergency Ultrasound Committee tasked with representing diverse practice locations and experiences. Participants were surveyed to determine the images or clips, measurements, mode, and number of views that should comprise the minimum standard for archiving. Consensus was pre-defined as 80%. Results: All thirteen experts participated fully in the three rounds. In establishing minimum image archiving standards for emergency department POCUS, complete consensus was achieved for first trimester pregnancy, hydronephrosis, cardiac activity versus standstill, lower extremity deep venous thrombosis, and ultrasound-guided central line placement. Consensus was achieved for the majority of statements regarding abdominal aortic aneurysm, extended focused assessment with sonography in trauma, pericardial effusion, left and right ventricular function, thoracic B-line assessment, cholelithiasis and cholecystitis scans. In total, consensus was reached for 58 of 69 statements (84.1%). This included agreement on 41 of 43 statements (95.3%) describing mandatory images for archiving in the above indications. Conclusion: Our modified Delphi-derived consensus represents the first national standard archiving requirements for emergency department POCUS. Depending on the clinical context, additional images may be required beyond this minimum standard to support a diagnosis.
Introduction: Cricothyrotomy is an intervention performed to salvage “can't intubate, can't ventilate” situations. Studies have shown poor accuracy landmarking the cricothyroid membrane, particularly in female patients by surgeons and anesthesiologists. There is less data available about emergency physician performance. This study examines the perceived versus actual success rate of landmarking the cricothyroid membrane by resident and staff emergency physicians using obese and non-obese models. Methods: Five male and female volunteers were selected as models. Each model was placed supine, and a point-of-care ultrasound expert landmarked the borders of each cricothyroid membrane. 20 residents and 15 staff emergency physicians were given one attempt to landmark five models. Data was gathered on each participant's perceived likelihood of success and attempt difficulty. Overall accuracy and accuracy stratified by sex and obesity status were calculated. Results: Overall landmarking accuracy amongst all participants was 58% (SD 18%). A difference in accuracy was found for obese males (88%) versus obese females (40%) (difference = 48%, 95% CI = 30-65%, p < 0.0001); and non-obese males (77%) versus non-obese females (46%) (difference = 31%, 95% CI = 12-51%, p = 0.004). There was no association between perceived difficulty and success (correlation = 0.07, 95% CI=−0.081-0.214, p = 0.37). Confidence levels overall were higher amongst staff physicians (3.0) than residents (2.7) (difference = 0.3, 95% CI = 0.1-0.6, p = 0.02), but there was no correlation between confidence in an attempt and its success (p = 0.33). Conclusion: We found that physicians demonstrate significantly lower accuracy when landmarking cricothyroid membranes of females. Emergency physicians were unable to predict their own accuracy while landmarking, which can potentially lead to increased failed attempts and longer time to secure the airway. Improved training techniques and a modified approach to cricothyrotomy may reduce failed attempts and improve the time to secure the airway.
Introduction: Biliary colic is a frequent cause for emergency department visits. Ultrasound is the initial test of choice for gallstone disease. We evaluated the effectiveness of a brief online educational module aimed to improve Emergency Physicians’ (EP) and General Surgeons’ (GS) accuracy in interpreting gallbladder ultrasound. Methods: EPs and GSs (resident/fellow and attending) from a single academic tertiary care hospital were invited to participate in a pre- and post- assessment of the interpretation of gallbladder ultrasound. Demographic information was obtained in a standardized survey. All questions developed for the pre- and post- assessment were reviewed for content and clarity by 3 EP and GS experts. Participants were asked 22 multiple-choice questions and then directed to a 7-minute video-tutorial on gallbladder ultrasound interpretation. After a 3-week period, participants then completed a post-intervention assessment. Following pre- and post- assessment, participants were surveyed on their confidence in gallbladder ultrasound interpretation. Data was analyzed using descriptive statistics and paired t-test. Results: The overall response rate of the pre-intervention was 50.9% (116/228) and 40.8% (93/228) for the post-intervention. In pre-intervention assessment, 27.7% of participants reported they were “not at all confident” in interpreting gallbladder ultrasound. This contrasted with post-intervention confidence level, where only minority (7.8%) reported “not at all confident”. There was a significant increase from the pre- to post- intervention (75.7% to 85.4%; p < 0.01) in correct interpretations. The greatest improvement was seen in those with previous experience interpreting gallbladder ultrasound (from 79.6% to 91.1%; p < 0.01). EPs scored significantly higher than GSs in the pre-intervention (EPs 78.2% compared to GSs 71.0%; p < 0.01). This trend was also observed in post-intervention, although the difference was no longer significant (EPs 88.9% compared to GSs 82.8%; p = 0.05). There was no significant difference in performance between residents/fellows compared to attendings. Conclusion: This brief, online intervention improved the accuracy of EPs’ and GSs’ interpretation of gallbladder ultrasound. This is an easily accessible tutorial that can be used as part of a comprehensive ultrasound educational program. Further studies are required to determine if EPs’ and GSs’ interpretations of gallbladder ultrasound impacts patient-oriented outcomes.
There have been many changes in the treatment of bipolar disorder.
It is necessary to develop guidelines that can more aptly respond to cultural issues and specifics in different countries.
The Korean Medication Algorithm for Bipolar Disorder (KMAP-BP) was firstly published in 2002, with updates in 2006 and 2010. This third update reviewed the experts' consensus of opinion on the pharmacological treatments of bipolar disorder.
The newly revised questionnaire composed of 55 key questions about clinical situations including 223 sub-items was sent to the experts.
Combination of mood stabilizer (MS) and atypical antipsychotic (AAP) was the first-line treatment option in acute mania. For the management of severe psychotic bipolar depression, combination of MS and AAP, combination of AAP and LTG, combination of MS, AAP and AD or LTG, combination of AAP and AD, and combination of AAP, AD and LTG was the first-line treatments. Combination of MS and AAP was the treatment of choice for management of mixed features. Combination of MS and AAP, MS or AAP monotherapy was the first-line options for management of maintenance phase after manic episode. For maintenance treatment after bipolar I depression, combination of MS and AAP, combination of MS and LTG, combination of AAP and LTG, MS or LTG monotherapy, and combination of MS, AAP and LTG were the first-line options.
Despite the limitations of expert consensus guideline, KMAP-BP 2014 may reflect the current patterns of clinical practice and recent researches.
Peer review is a critical component toward facilitating a robust science in industrial and organizational (I-O) psychology. Peer review exists beyond academic publishing in organizations, university departments, grant agencies, classrooms, and many more work contexts. Reviewers are responsible for judging the quality of research conducted and submitted for evaluation. Furthermore, they are responsible for treating authors and their work with respect, in a supportive and developmental manner. Given its central role in our profession, it is curious that we do not have formalized review guidelines or standards and that most of us never receive formal training in peer reviewing. To support this endeavor, we are proposing a competency framework for peer review. The purpose of the competency framework is to provide a definition of excellent peer reviewing and guidelines to reviewers for which types of behaviors will lead to good peer reviews. By defining these competencies, we create clarity around expectations for peer review, standards for good peer reviews, and opportunities for training the behaviors required to deliver good peer reviews. We further discuss how the competency framework can be used to improve peer reviewing and suggest additional steps forward that involve suggestions for how stakeholders can get involved in fostering high-quality peer reviewing.
Introduction: Point-of-care ultrasonography (PoCUS) is being incorporated into Canadian undergraduate medical school curricula. The purpose of this study was to evaluate novel PoCUS education sessions to determine what aspects of the sessions benefitted from hands-on training and which PoCUS skills were retained over time. Methods: Second year medical students voluntarily received three different PoCUS training sessions, each lasting three hours. Prior to the sessions, participants prepared independently with pre-circulated online learning materials. After a 15-minute lecture, experienced PoCUS providers led small group (1 instructor: 5 students), live scanning sessions. Evaluations were conducted before and after each session using expert validated multiple choice questions testing general and procedural knowledge, image recognition and interpretation. Volunteer students were evaluated via direct observation of live scanning using an objective structured assessment of technical skills (OSAT) based on the O-score and then re-evaluated at 2 months post-training to assess PoCUS skills retention. Results: 40 second year medical students participated in extended Focused Assessment with Sonography for Trauma (eFAST), cardiac, and gallbladder PoCUS sessions. The live-training sessions significantly improved student PoCUS knowledge beyond what they learned independently for eFAST (p < 0.001), cardiac (p < 0.001), and gallbladder (p = 0.02). The largest improvement was noted in procedural knowledge test scores improving from 44.0% to 84.0% (n = 38). 16 students were evaluated after each session with a mean O-score of 2.37. 8 students returned two months later to be re-evaluated demonstrating a change in O-scores for eFAST (2.00 to 2.38, p = 0.15), cardiac (2.28 to 2.00, p = 0.32), and gallbladder (2.91 to 1.88, p < 0.001). Conclusion: Procedural PoCUS knowledge benefited the most with hands-on training. eFAST and cardiac PoCUS competency was maintained over time while gallbladder PoCUS competency degraded suggesting that targeted PoCUS skills training may be possible. Further study is required to determine the best use of PoCUS resources in undergraduate medical education.
Introduction: Increasing opioid prescribing has been linked to an epidemic of opioid misuse. Our objective was to synthesize available evidence about patient-, prescriber-, medication-, and system-level risk factors for developing opioid misuse from prescribed opioids among patients presenting with pain unrelated to cancer. Our hypothesis was that we would identify risk factors predisposing patients to developing opioid misuse. Methods: We developed a systematic search strategy and applied it to nine electronic reference databases and six clinical trial registries. We hand searched related journals and conference proceedings, the reference lists of included studies, and the top 100 hits on Google. We included studies where a medical professional exposed adults or children to an opioid through a prescription. We excluded studies with over 50% cancer patients, palliative patients, and those with illicit opioid initiation. Two reviewers independently reviewed titles, abstracts, and full texts, and extracted data using standardized forms. We assessed study quality using risk of bias. We synthesized effect sizes of dichotomous risk factors on opioid misuse using inverse variance random-effects meta-analysis, and the inverse variance-weighted mean difference between opioid misusers and non-misusers for continuously measured factors. We conducted an a priori defined subgroup analysis among opioid-naïve patients. Results: Among 9,629 studies, 67 met our inclusion criteria. Among those who had been prescribed outpatient opioids, the following factors were associated with the development of misuse: a prior history of illicit drug use (OR: 4.21, 95% CI: 2.31-7.65), recent benzodiazepine use (OR: 2.57, 95% CI: 1.23-5.38), any mental health diagnosis (OR: 2.45, 95% CI: 1.91-3.15), any short acting (IR) opioid prescription (OR: 2.40, 95% CI: 1.15-5.02), younger age (OR: 2.19, 95%CI: 1.81-2.64), and male sex (OR: 1.23, 95% CI: 1.10-1.36). Among studies limiting their population to opioid-naïve patients, younger age was the most significant risk factor for opioid misuse (OR: 5.42, 95% CI:1.51-19.43). Conclusion: Of the risk factors examined, non-cancer pain patients with a prior history of substance use or mental health diagnoses were at highest risk for prescription opioid misuse. Younger opioid-naïve patients were at highest risk of misuse. Clinicians should consider these risk factors when managing acute pain in the emergency department.
Introduction: Point-of-Care Ultrasound (PoCUS) is being increasingly utilized during cardiac arrests for prognosis. Following the publication of recent studies, the goal of this study was to systematically review and analyze the literature to evaluate the accuracy of PoCUS in predicting return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC), survival to hospital admission (SHA), and survival to hospital discharge (SHD) in adult patients with non-traumatic, non- shockable out- of-hospital or emergency department cardiac arrest. Methods: A systematic review and meta-analysis was completed. A search of Medline, EMBASE, Cochrane, CINAHL, ClinicalTrials.gov and the World Health Organization Registry was completed from 1974 until August 24th 2018. Adult randomized controlled trials and observational studies were included. The QUADAS-2 tool was applied by two independent reviewers. Data analysis was completed according to PRISMA guidelines and with a random effects model for the meta-analysis. Heterogeneity was assessed using I-squared statistics. Results: Ten studies (1,485 participants) were included. Cardiac activity on PoCUS had a pooled sensitivity of 59.9% (95% confidence interval 36.5%-79.4%) and specificity of 91.5% (80.8%-96.5%) for ROSC; 74.7% (58.3%-86.2%) and 80.5% (71.7%-87.4%) for SHA; and 69.4% (45.5%-86.0%) and 74.6% (59.8%-85.3%) for SHD. The sensitivity of cardiac activity on PoCUS for predicting ROSC was 24.7%(6.8%-59.4%) in the asystole subgroup compared with 77% (59.4%-88.5%) within the PEA subgroup. Cardiac activity on PoCUS, compared to an absence had an odd ratio of 15.9 (5.9-42.5) for ROSC, 9.8 (4.9-19.4) for SHA and 5.7 (2.1-15.6) for SHD. Positive likelihood ratio (LR) was 6.65 (3.16-14.0) and negative LR was 0.27 (0.12-0.61) for ROSC. Conclusion: Cardiac activity on PoCUS was associated with improved odds for ROSC, SHA, and SHD among adults with non-traumatic asystole and PEA. We report lower sensitivity and higher negative likelihood ratio, but with greater heterogeneity compared to previous systematic reviews. PoCUS may provide valuable information in the management of non-traumatic PEA or asystole, but should not be viewed as the sole predictor in determining outcomes in these patients.
Tools applied at the point of care can provide valuable prognostic information for practitioners. In this one-year, prospective observational study, we examined the association of the short performance physical battery (SPPB) and one-year emergency department (ED) visits and hospitalizations. Overall, 191 new referrals attending an outpatient geriatric clinic in Hamilton, Ontario, were approached, and 120 were enrolled. SPPB and other assessments were completed during the routine clinical visit. ED visits and hospitalizations within one year of the baseline assessment were abstracted from electronic medical records. Logistic regression analyses were used to determine ED visits and hospitalization predictors. The mean SPPB score in the study cohort (mean age 80.6, SD 6.3 years; 53% female) was 6.3 (SD 3.2). SPPB score was associated with a one-year ED visit (OR = 0.90 [0.78–1.03]) and hospitalization (OR = 0.84 [0.72–0.97]) after adjusting for age, sex, and co-morbidities.
Global inequity in access to and availability of essential mental health services is well recognized. The mental health treatment gap is approximately 50% in all countries, with up to 90% of people in the lowest-income countries lacking access to required mental health services. Increased investment in global mental health (GMH) has increased innovation in mental health service delivery in LMICs. Situational analyses in areas where mental health services and systems are poorly developed and resourced are essential when planning for research and implementation, however, little guidance is available to inform methodological approaches to conducting these types of studies. This scoping review provides an analysis of methodological approaches to situational analysis in GMH, including an assessment of the extent to which situational analyses include equity in study designs. It is intended as a resource that identifies current gaps and areas for future development in GMH. Formative research, including situational analysis, is an essential first step in conducting robust implementation research, an essential area of study in GMH that will help to promote improved availability of, access to and reach of mental health services for people living with mental illness in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). While strong leadership in this field exists, there remain significant opportunities for enhanced research representing different LMICs and regions.
Introduction: Aligning health systems appropriately to the needs of the elderly is an urgent global priority, according to the WHO. In Canada, ED length of stay has risen 16% for elderly patients in the last year. Agitation requiring chemical restraint is a common, high-risk problem for elderly in the ED. Improving outcomes in this heterogeneous population remain difficult due to inability to effectively identify and evaluate delirium, frailty, multi-morbidity, and incompatibility with the ED system. A data-driven approach to complex health problems is a recognized emerging tool for healthcare innovation. New opportunities for targeted quality improvement in the ED will be uncovered by identifying the clinical characteristics of elderly patients with agitation, and the system process factors that influence their outcomes. Methods: We studied 400 patients in a case-control study at two tertiary-care EDs over five years. Patients were randomly selected if age was greater than 75 years. 200 cases of patients who received an intravenous dose of haloperidol, midazolam and/or lorazepam were selected as a surrogate data marker for having agitation. Controls were randomly matched by age and ED diagnosis. Standardized clinical, systems and process variables were collected. We conducted a univariate analysis. Results: Elderly given intravenous medications for agitation had increased mortality (OR 3.8 CI: 1.6-10.7, p<0.001) and ED length of stay (27 vs. 15 hours, p<0.001). No statistical significance was found in clinical characteristics, CTAS scores, PRISMA7 frailty scores nor sentinel or return visits. There was no statistical difference in median hospital length of stay (8 vs. 6 days, p<0.70). No differences were found in median time from ED physician seeing a patient to first consultant request (73 vs. 83 mins, p=0.75). The largest time intervals contributing to ED length of stay were from first consultant request to hospital request (15 vs. 12 hours, p=0.056) and hospitalization delay (13 vs. 7 hours, p=0.45). Conclusion: Identification of high-risk elderly patients for targeted intervention through a data-driven approach is feasible and informative. Traditional clinical characteristics remain unhelpful in identifying and evaluating outcomes in elderly with agitation. We have identified a process factor that is clinically relevant and pragmatic to evaluate in our ED system. Future research focused on optimizing systems process factors to improve quality of elderly care should be prioritized.
It has not been well established whether dietary folate intake reduces the risk of diabetes development. We aimed to clarify the prospective association between dietary folate intake and type 2 diabetes (T2D) risk among 7333 Korean adults aged 40 years or older who were included in the Multi-Rural Communities Cohort. Dietary folate intake was estimated from all 106 food items listed on a FFQ, not including folate intake from supplements. Two different measurements of dietary folate intake were used: the baseline consumption and the average consumption from baseline until just before the end of follow-up. The association between folate intake and T2D risk was determined through a modified Poisson regression model with a robust error estimator controlling for potential confounders. For 29 745 person years, 319 cases of diabetes were ascertained. In multivariable analyses, dietary folate intake was inversely associated with risk of T2D for women, not for men. For women, the incidence rate ratio of diabetes in the third tertile compared with the first tertile was 0·57 (95 % CI 0·38–0·87, Pfor trend=0·0085) in the baseline consumption model and 0·64 (95 % CI 0·43–0·95, Pfor trend=0·0244) in the average consumption model. These inverse associations was found in both normal fasting blood glucose group and impaired fasting glucose group among women. Among non-users of multinutrients and vitamin supplements, the significant inverse association remained. Thus, higher dietary intake of folate is prospectively associated with lower risk of diabetes for women.
Vitamin D deficiency (plasma 25-hydroxycholecalciferol (25(OH)D)<50 nmol/l) is highly prevalent, increases risk of non-communicable diseases (NCD) and associates with increased oxidative stress in obese subjects, the elderly and patients suffering from NCD. If confirmed as an independent driver of oxidative stress, nutritional and other public health strategies to improve vitamin D status would be strongly supported. We investigated vitamin D/oxidative stress links without the confounding effects of advanced age, obesity, smoking or pre-existing disease. Plasma 25(OH)D and biomarkers of oxidative stress and antioxidant status (plasma allantoin, oxidised LDL, ferric reducing antioxidant power (FRAP), ascorbic acid, urine 8-oxo-7,8-dihydro-2'-deoxyguanosine) were measured in fasting samples from 196 consenting, healthy adults aged 18–26 years. Correlation between 25(OH)D and each biomarker as well as biomarker differences across 25(OH)D quartiles and groups (<25/25–49/≥50 nmol/l) were investigated. Median 25(OH)D was 40 nmol/l; >70 % of participants were vitamin D deficient. No significant correlations and no biomarker differences across 25(OH)D quartiles or groups were seen except for total antioxidant status. A weak direct association (r 0·252, P<0·05) was observed between 25(OH)D and FRAP, and those in the lowest 25(OH)D quartile and group had significantly lower FRAP values. Results did not reveal a clear link between vitamin D status and oxidative stress biomarkers in the absence of advanced age, obesity and disease, though some evidence of depleted antioxidant status in those with vitamin D deficiency was seen. Poor antioxidant status may pre-date increased oxidative stress. Study of effects of correction of deficiency on antioxidant status and oxidative stress in vitamin D-deficient but otherwise healthy subjects is needed.
Introduction: Trauma code activation is initiated by emergency physicians using physiologic and anatomic criteria, mechanism of injury and patient demographic factors in conjunction with data obtained from emergency medical service personnel. This enables rapid definitive treatment of trauma patients. Our objective was to identify factors associated with delayed trauma team activation. Methods: We conducted a health records review to supplement data from a regional trauma center database. We assessed consecutive cases from the trauma database from January 2008 to March 2014 including all cases in which a trauma code was activated by an emergency physician. We defined a delay in trauma code activation as a time greater than 30 minutes from time to arrival to trauma team activation. Data were collected in Microsoft Excel and analyzed in Statistical Analysis System (SAS). We conducted univariate analysis for factors potentially influencing trauma team activation and we subsequently used multiple logistic regression analysis models for delayed activation in relation to mortality, length of stay and time to operative management. Results: 1020 patients were screened from which 174 patients were excluded, as they were seen directly by the trauma team. 846 patients were included for our analysis. 4.1% (35/846) of trauma codes were activated after 30 minutes. Mean age was 40.8 years in the early group versus 49.2 in the delayed group p=0.01. There was no significant difference in type of injury, injury severity or time from injury between the two groups. Patients were over 70 years in 7.6% in the early activation group vs 17.1% in the delayed group (p=0.04). 77.7% of the early group were male vs 71.4% in the delayed group (p=0.39). There was no significant difference in mortality (15.2% vs 11.4% p=0.10), median length of stay (10 days in both groups p=0.94) or median time to operative management (331 minutes vs 277 minutes p=0.52). Conclusion: Delayed activation is linked with increasing age with no clear link with increased mortality. Given the severe injuries in the delayed cohort which required activation of the trauma team further emphasis on the older trauma patient and interventions to recognize this vulnerable population should be made. When assessing elderly trauma patients emergency physicians should have a low threshold to activate trauma teams.
Using data from the Research on Asian Psychotropic Prescription Patterns for Antidepressants (REAP-AD) study, we aimed to present the rates and clinical correlates of suicidal thoughts/acts in patients recruited from a total of 40 centres in 10 Asian countries/areas: China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, and Thailand.
Data from 1122 patients with depressive disorders in the REAP-AD study were used. The ICD-10 was employed to diagnose depressive episodes and recurrent depressive disorder. The presence or absence of suicidal thoughts/acts and profile of other depressive symptoms was established using the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence guidelines for depression. Country/area differences in rates of suicidal thoughts/acts were evaluated with the χ2 test. In addition, depressive symptom profiles, other clinical characteristics, and patterns of psychotropic drug prescription in depressed patients with and without suicidal thoughts/acts were compared using analysis of covariance for continuous variables and logistic regression analysis for discrete variables to adjust the effects of covariates.
The rates of suicidal thoughts/acts in 10 countries/areas varied from 12.8% in Japan to 36.3% in China. Patients with suicidal thoughts/acts presented more persistent sadness (adjusted odds ratio [aOR]=2.64, p<0.001), loss of interest (aOR=2.33, p<0.001), fatigue (aOR=1.58, p<0.001), insomnia (aOR=1.74, p<0.001), poor concentration (aOR=1.88, p<0.001), low self-confidence (aOR=1.78, p<0.001), poor appetite (aOR=2.27, p<0.001), guilt/self-blame (aOR=3.03, p<0.001), and use of mood stabilisers (aOR=1.79, p<0.001) than those without suicidal thoughts/acts.
Suicidal thoughts/acts can indicate greater severity of depression, and are associated with a poorer response to antidepressants and increased burden of illness. Hence, suicidal thoughts/acts can provide a clinical index reflecting the clinical status of depressive disorders in Asians.
Introduction: Point of care ultrasound has become an established tool in the initial management of patients with undifferentiated hypotension. Current established protocols (RUSH, ACES, etc) were developed by expert user opinion, rather than objective, prospective data. We wished to use reported disease incidence to develop an informed approach to PoCUS in hypotension using a “4 F’s” approach: Fluid; Form; Function; Filling. Methods: We summarized the incidence of PoCUS findings from an international multicentre RCT, and using a modified Delphi approach incorporating this data we obtained the input of 24 international experts associated with five professional organizations led by the International Federation of Emergency Medicine. The modified Delphi tool was developed to reach an international consensus on how to integrate PoCUS for hypotensive emergency department patients. Results: Rates of abnormal PoCUS findings from 151 patients with undifferentiated hypotension included left ventricular dynamic changes (43%), IVC abnormalities (27%), pericardial effusion (16%), and pleural fluid (8%). Abdominal pathology was rare (fluid 5%, AAA 2%). After two rounds of the survey, using majority consensus, agreement was reached on a SHoC-hypotension protocol comprising: A. Core: 1. Cardiac views (Sub-xiphoid and parasternal windows for pericardial fluid, cardiac form and ventricular function); 2. Lung views for pleural fluid and B-lines for filling status; and 3. IVC views for filling status; B. Supplementary: Additional cardiac views; and C. Additional views (when indicated) including peritoneal fluid, aorta, pelvic for IUP, and proximal leg veins for DVT. Conclusion: An international consensus process based on prospectively collected disease incidence has led to a proposed SHoC-hypotension PoCUS protocol comprising a stepwise clinical-indication based approach of Core, Supplementary and Additional PoCUS views.
Introduction: Testicular torsion is a time sensitive condition for which there can be significant delays to surgery or transfer to definitive care while trying to obtain an ultrasound to confirm the diagnosis. This study determines the test characteristics for each individual sonographic sign of testicular torsion associated with the patient requiring surgical intervention. Methods: A retrospective health records review of adult patients with acute, non-traumatic scrotal pain or swelling (defined as under 24 hours since onset) presenting to one of two Canadian academic tertiary care emergency departments between November 2009 and March 2013 was performed. A single data abstractor completed a case report form for each patient including demographics, individual ultrasound findings, final diagnosis, and need for surgical intervention. The sensitivity and specificity of each ultrasonographic sign (including testicular heterogeneity, decreased colour doppler, and decreased pulsed wave doppler) at predicting surgical intervention during the same hospital visit was calculated along with 95% confidence intervals. Results: During the study period there were a total of 876 emergency department visits for scrotal pain, of which 198 patients met our inclusion criteria. The included patients had a mean age of 36.2 years. Decreased blood flow to the painful testicle on colour doppler showed the best overall test characteristics with a sensitivity of 82.4% (95% CI 55.8%-95.3%) and specificity of 100% (95% CI 96.3%-100%) for predicting a need for surgical intervention for testicular torsion. Other ultrasound findings for testicular torsion included a heterogeneous appearance of the painful testicle (sensitivity 47.1% [95% CI 23.9%-71.5%], specificity 77.4% [95% CI 68.9%-84.2%]), and decreased arterial or venous flow on pulsed wave doppler (sensitivity 76.5% [95% CI 49.8%-92.1%], specificity 100% [95% CI 96.3%-100%]). Conclusion: Decreased blood flow to the painful testicle on colour doppler showed excellent specificity and can rapidly “rule-in” a need for surgical intervention for testicular torsion. Given that colour doppler is relatively easy to learn and perform, future studies should assess the use of colour doppler using point of care ultrasound to expedite surgical consultation.