EMT NOTES – Medical Testing Miscellaneous Notes

  • Stridor-harsh, high pitched lung sounds.
  • Adventitious-formed accidentally or in an unusual anatomical position (eg. adventitious lung sound are abnormal).
  • Albuterol-bronchodilator, generic name for proventil
  • Acute hyperventilation syndrome– presents with tachypnea and tingling in extremities
  • Ischemic heart disease– decreased blood flow to myocardium
  • Atherosclerosis vs. arteriosclerosis 
    • although they are often used interchangeably, atherosclerosis is a specific type of arteriosclerosis
    • atherosclerosis- narrowing of coronary arteries due to fatty/cholesterol deposits
    • arteriosclerosis- stiffening of arteries
  • Acute Coronary Syndrome (ACS)-group of symptoms caused by ischemia
  • Aphasia-unable to produce/understand speech
  • Dysarthria-slurred and difficult to understand speech
    • to remember this one, look at the word itself.  The “th” in dysarthria sounds like a slurred part of speech
  • Signs/symptoms of shock:
    • can be mimicked by hypoglycemia, intracranial bleeding, and postictal state (altered mental status following seizure)
    • NOT likely to be mimicked by hypovolemia
  • Solid abdominal organs- spleen, kidneys, pancreas.  Injury to these causes internal bleeding
  • Hollow abdominal organs-stomach, intestines, bladder.  Injury to these organs may cause them to pop and leak.
  • Cholecystitis
    • inflammation of gallbladder
    • patient may feel pain in upper right shoulder due to the way the nerves from the gallbladder connect to spine.  This is called referred pain.

EMT NOTES - Medical Testing Miscellaneous Notes 1

Esophageal Varices

-may be due to liver damage from alcoholism

  • Liver is a very vascular organ and is likely to bleed profusely if injured
  • Acute abdomen
    • sudden, severe abdominal pain of unclear etiology that is less than 24 hours in duration. It is in many cases a medical emergency, requiring urgent and specific diagnosis. Several causes need surgical treatment (Wikipedia)
    • initial pain tends to be vague and poorly localized (non-specific)
  • Patients with kidney failure cannot adequately filter and remove toxins from their blood stream.  Dialysis does the filtering for them.  When they miss a dialysis treatment, the toxins build up and they may present with weakness and foul body odor as a result
  • Type 2 diabetes patients are able to produce insulin but do not absorb it effectively.  Thus, supplemental insulin is not usually used.  Insulin use is more common in type 1 diabetes.
  • Kussmaul respirations
    • a deep and labored breathing pattern often associated with severe metabolic acidosis, particularly diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) but also kidney failure (Wikipedia)
    • body’s attempt to eliminate acids, in form of CO2 in blood/exhilations
    • common in diabetics with hyperglycemia
  • Diabetic coma is caused by hyperglycemia and can only be corrected in a hospital setting
  • Hyperglycemia may cause excessive urination in diabetics
  • Normal blood glucose levels– 80-120 mg/dL
  • Hypoglycemia signs/symptoms:
    • combativeness
    • cool, clammy skin
    • tachycardia
    • rapid resp (tachypnea)
    • weakness
  • Stingers should be scraped away.  Do not remove with fingers or tweezers, as this may squeeze the poison sack remaining at the end of the stinger and inject more poison into the patient.
  • Anaphylaxis-most patients die within first 30 minutes
  • Benadryl is an antihistamine
  • Do not give oral airway for semi-conscious patients
  • Epinephrine– vasoconstrictor and bronchodilator
  • Distended and gaurded abdomen- be alert for signs/symptoms of shock

Fun Fact

That was a lot of content!  How about a fun fact? (not on exam)

EMT NOTES - Medical Testing Miscellaneous Notes 2

Adult human body has about 5-6L of blood in circulation at any moment in time.  That is approximately 1.5 gallons, or, since we like to measure all our liquids in Poland Spring jug equivalents, about this much:

EMT NOTES - Medical Testing Miscellaneous Notes 3

EMT NOTES - Medical Testing Miscellaneous Notes 4