Coma & ALOC | EMS Quick Study Help

Recognizing coma and altered level of consciousness in EMS patient assessment. Paramedic exam study tips video focusing on coma and LOC.

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EMS Airway Assessment | Hours Of Training, Seconds To Act

EMS airway assessment is drilled in to us from EMT school to recert classes like ACLS. But we know it all already so why keep harping on it? While it may take hours of classroom training and skills practice to learn airway assessment. You only have seconds in the field to decide how to manage a patients airway.

Deciding on using a BVM, KING airway or ETI depends on many things. You should be thinking about them as you approach your patients and during your
initial and on going EMS patient assessments.

This video drills home some more key points to think about during your airway assessment. Take a few minutes now to watch the video so you can
act in seconds later when your patient needs it.

Do you have some airway assessment tips? Post them below and be sure to like this video if you found it helpful.


Recognizing Aphasia In EMS

pixtures_reloaded_logoThis week we were joined by Ellayne S. Ganzfried, M.S., CCC-SLP who is a speech-language pathologist and the Executive Director of the National Aphasia Association. Fellow paramedic and long time subscriber to Avi Golden also joined us to share his story about how aphasia has affected him.

Many health professionals have heard of aphasia but often don’t have a good understanding of the disorder and how to communicate with a person with aphasia. EMTs and other health professionals are in fact more likely to encounter a person with aphasia than someone with multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy or muscular dystrophy. Unfortunately, because few health professionals are specifically trained to deal with people with aphasia, they may mistake the aphasia for mental illness, mental retardation, or other conditions. Misunderstandings may arise and efforts to help people with aphasia may be useless – or dangerous. The goal of this episode is to provide comprehensive information about aphasia along with practical communicative and intervention strategies.

Thanks to EMS Manager for sponsoring the show. To get your customized free trial of their innovative EMS employee management and scheduling software click here.

Be sure to visit John Broyles on his podcast this Saturday by clicking here and check out Josh and his one of kind EMS oxygen wrench by clicking here.

I also want to give a shout out to Tena who joins us each week and has her new podcast and blog here.

Join Jim at Turbo Medic here

Get more information about aphasia via the National Aphasia Association by clicking here.

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EMS Skills | Assessing Lung Sounds

Assessing lung sounds in EMS as a paramedic or EMT can be difficult. All the background noise like diesel engines, radios, movement and even what a patient is wearing can really hinder what you are hearing. Knowing a baseline of what to expect to hear can be helpful. This week I talk about four common lung sounds we might hear as EMS providers.

Want additional lung sound assessment training and more? Check out Turbo Medic and master your assessment skills. Click here.

EMS Patient Assessment | Skin

ems trauma assessment tipsThis patient assessment sign is discussed during this Monday Minutes session. Remember, assessment of the patients skin during your primary EMS assessment can give you clues to the patients circulatory status. See the video version over at youtube


Assessing EMS Patient Assessment

Patient assessment in EMS is pointed to as the key ingredient with our patient contacts. Yet how much time is really spent on this in class? Things like the importance of reassessment, differential diagnosis and treatments. We seem to have this pride of ABCDE, DCAP, BTLS and knowing it, sticking to primary and secondary surveys. But what about really knowing what we are looking for and identifying true emergencies instead of fitting patients into protocols? Check out this episode, share your patient assessment tips and tell us your indoctrination into “patient assessment”.

Thanks to Bob Sullivan for dropping by with his thoughts. Loved the “treat every question as if it may be the last one you get to ask” tip.

Show notes:

Greg Friese article “Patient Assessment: A non-linear process” and comments at

25% Off WANTYNU wrench use promo code “emsofficehours”  at

Donate for the 10-13 at

Follow Bob over on Twitter he is @emsptperspect

Solutions For Frequent Flyers | Why Am I Looking There?

This week Jim comments on the Ntg and IV access thought process, the grounding frequent flyer program at SFFD and asks a question about examining patients private areas.

Show links:

Reeves EMS –

EMS Grants Help –

Ntg vs IV –

Frequent Flyer Article –

Tips On Advocating For Your Non-911 Patient

With a rash of non emergent calls lately, Jim talks about ways to educate patients who don’t need 911 but may benefit more from a doctors office or clinic. Take a listen and discover when is a good time to try and educate a patient or family and when you should give up. Do you just haul from the call or do you try and make the most out of the patient contact?

Dextrose, Dementia – The Difference.

Ever get the call where a patient has both diabetes and dementia and the call is for a change in mental status? When encountering these patients, it is very important to get a complete history leading up to the event such as last meal, medication administration, and if the change is sudden or gradual. In this weeks Mondays Minutes I wanted to touch on these two topics and how they can affect us as EMS professionals in the field.

Check out the EMS Boot Camp session on diabetes in the EMS setting by clicking here.

EMS and The “Caps”

Here are two items I chose that while do not relate to each other directly, they do relate to your everyday duties.