In my 4th year of medical school, a boy drowned in the lake near my house. It was a shocking event at the time because my perception had been that drowning was a rare tragedy, more abundant and dramatized on television than in reality. However, during my training, I have learned that drowning remains a significant cause of death in children. Although mortality rates have been trending downward in recent years, CDC data from 2019 shows that drowning is still the leading cause of accidental injury death in children aged one to four and remains one of the top three leading causes of accidental injury death in children of all ages over one year. Children under the age of 14 account for one out of every five drowning deaths and there are approximately ten deaths per day due to drowning. It is important to note that these reported numbers relate to mortality rate alone and do not include morbidity from drowning such as neurological deficits or sequelae from a drowning event. The full extent of injury secondary to submersion is difficult to know as data gathering is challenging due to misinformation that persists surrounding drowning among the public, government agencies and even the medical community.read more
Influenza is a relatively common, usually self-limited and seasonal illness. The influenza season this year has seen quite an impact on multiple populations throughout various parts of the United States. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) has reported that 2018 in particular has been one of the worst in recent history. As we see the confluence of our peak respiratory season for infants, children and teenagers merge with this influenza epidemic, we thought it appropriate to review influenza facts, tips and recommendations.read more
As the days shorten and we move into the winter holiday season, most of us take some time to reflect upon the year and take stock of where we are and where we will head come January 1st.
For myself, this happens to include the pediatric emergency medicine section.
Mike Greenwald, the outgoing chair, has really gotten me off to a great start with the formation of workgroups/subcommittees. We will use these groups, Education, Research, Advocacy, and Clinical/Quality to generate new microsite content, produce section grants and leverage as outreach for new members.read more
Two-month-old male presented with unknown duration of respiratory distress. He had been “breathing fast since birth” with no acute fevers, vomiting, or sick contacts. Review of systems is notable for diffuse muscle weakness and chronic coughing with feeds. Developmental history is significant for lifelong decreased movement and inability to lift head when prone. No family history of motor delay or decreased tone.
Vitals: afebrile, HR 163, RR 68, PO2 92%. Patient is ill-appearing with minimal response to tactile stimuli. The evident tachypnea is associated with increased abdominal muscle use with retractions and grunting. Neurological exam has open, flat, anterior fontanelle with profound head lag and “frog-legging” of lower extremities. Deep tendon reflexes cannot be elicited. Skin exam is negative for rashes or hematomas.read more
Just a few weeks after the 2016 ACEP Scientific Assembly and I’m still enjoying the academic high I get after the conference each fall. So many terrific speakers and topics—and I’m very grateful to have access to their slides as I struggle to recall their many pearls of wisdom. From the high fidelity Code Black simulations to my final session “Wilderness Medical Improvisation: What Would MacGyver do?” I couldn’t get enough.
Equally inspiring was the turnout for our annual section meeting. We had such a diverse group taking the time to meet after a long day of lectures. Our section enjoys the continuity of veterans such as Madeline Joseph, Sharon Mace, and Lee Benjamin, as well as newer faces such as Jessica Wall, Kurtis Mayz, and Nadia Pearson. The Pediatric section is remarkable not only because of its robust numbers (over 900!) but because of its diversity and welcoming atmosphere. This is a great way to get involved in addressing the challenges we all face in caring for children in emergency medicine.read more