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Preventing Drowning And Other Submersion Injuries

This is another post derived from a presentation given at the 2011 Annual Summer Meeting of the Wilderness Medical Society. Tracy Cushing, MD, of the University of Colorado School of Medicine gave an excellent presentation on submersion injury—i.e., the dangers of becoming submerged under water. What follows is some of what we learned.

Historically there have been many terms and definitions, such as “drowning,” “near-drowning,” “dry drowning,” and others. Current experts favor the term “submersion injury” as any adverse effect from submersion in water. This commonly causes difficulty breathing, for many reasons. “Immersion syndrome” refers to the situation where there is a lethal heart rhythm during or after a cold-water exposure, usually attributed to stimulation of the vagus nerve, which slows the heart rate. “Shallow water blackout” refers to a person becoming unconscious after hyperventilating prior to attempting a lengthy period of breath-holding underwater.

Drowning is the Read more »

This post, Preventing Drowning And Other Submersion Injuries, was originally published on Healthine.com by Paul Auerbach, M.D..

Emergency Rescue Essentials: The Outdoor Gear You Need

First aid kitWilderness medicine folks are often considered to be “gearheads.” That is, we love to try out new outdoor equipment, whether it is for our activities, search and rescue, or personal safety. Improvisation is important, but it’s better to have what you need, particularly if you can pack light and accomplish your mission without unnecessary bulk and weight. There are numerous suppliers of equipment online. From time to time, as I am made aware of these, I will let you know.

Rescue Essentials is a frequent exhibitor at wilderness medicine continuing medical education meetings, and so I have become familiar with their carried product lines.

Importantly, Rescue Essentials carries the complete product line for SAM
Medical Products, which include the SAM Splint series and BlistOBan blister
(prevention) bandages. The company sells equipment for persons who respond to outdoor medicine situations, tactical medics, search and rescue personnel, and wilderness emergency medical technicians.

As a reminder of what a layperson might need to consider carrying in order to be prepared to assist a person outdoors in need of medical attention, here is a list that appears in the 5th edition of Medicine for the Outdoors. From this list, one would select the desired items: Read more »

This post, Emergency Rescue Essentials: The Outdoor Gear You Need, was originally published on Healthine.com by Paul Auerbach, M.D..

Tips For Reducing Springtime Allergy Symptoms

Allergists from the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI) have some tips for reducing allergy symptoms this spring. I thought they were excellent and worth sharing… Enjoy!

Do:

1. Wear glasses or sunglasses when outdoors. Covering  your eyes keeps pollen and other irritants away from this sensitive area, which reduces itchiness and redness.

2. Shower and wash your hair before bed.  Cleaning up before getting into bed helps remove pollen from your hair and skin, which reduces irritation. You should also consider keeping pets out of the bedroom if they’ve been outside, as pollen can cling to their fur. Read more »

Latest Interviews

IDEA Labs: Medical Students Take The Lead In Healthcare Innovation

It’s no secret that doctors are disappointed with the way that the U.S. healthcare system is evolving. Most feel helpless about improving their work conditions or solving technical problems in patient care. Fortunately one young medical student was undeterred by the mountain of disappointment carried by his senior clinician mentors…

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How To Be A Successful Patient: Young Doctors Offer Some Advice

I am proud to be a part of the American Resident Project an initiative that promotes the writing of medical students residents and new physicians as they explore ideas for transforming American health care delivery. I recently had the opportunity to interview three of the writing fellows about how to…

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Latest Book Reviews

Book Review: Is Empathy Learned By Faking It Till It’s Real?

I m often asked to do book reviews on my blog and I rarely agree to them. This is because it takes me a long time to read a book and then if I don t enjoy it I figure the author would rather me remain silent than publish my…

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The Spirit Of The Place: Samuel Shem’s New Book May Depress You

When I was in medical school I read Samuel Shem s House Of God as a right of passage. At the time I found it to be a cynical yet eerily accurate portrayal of the underbelly of academic medicine. I gained comfort from its gallows humor and it made me…

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Eat To Save Your Life: Another Half-True Diet Book

I am hesitant to review diet books because they are so often a tangled mess of fact and fiction. Teasing out their truth from falsehood is about as exhausting as delousing a long-haired elementary school student. However after being approached by the authors’ PR agency with the promise of a…

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