Critical Care

Recognize Dynamic Hyperinflation (Air-Trapping) at the Bedside Using the Flow Curve

Dynamic hyperinflation (autoPEEP, air trapping, etc.) is a process leading to an increase in end-expiratory lung volumes and increased airway pressures. This process may occur secondary to obstructive lung pathology and/or an increase in minute-ventilation without sufficient time for expiration. The pathologic effects of dynamic hyperinflation include an increased work-of-breathing, barotrauma, pneumothorax, and an increase in intrathoracic pressure leading to a decrease in cardiac output and possible hemodynamic collapse. Rapid identification of this process is crucial for reversing it.

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You Have Intubated an Asthmatic... Now What?: Initial Ventilator Settings in Severe Asthma Exacerbation

In the setting of a severe asthma exacerbation that is refractory to medical mangagment and noninvasive ventilation, mechanical ventilation can be life-saving. However, the ventilator can quickly kill your patient if careful thought is not taken to address the unique respiratory needs and pulmonary physiology inherent to severe asthma.

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Procainamide vs Amiodarone: The Evidence Behind Treating Stable, Monomorphic Ventricular Tachycardia

When treating acute, wide-complex tachycardia deemed to be stable, monomorphic ventricular tachycardia, two agents remain prevalent among emergency medicine physicians: amiodarone and procainamide. This post examines some of the evidence behind these agents in achieving successful conversion of stable, monomoprhic VT.

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