Recent Submissions

  • Incidence of peri-opiate nausea and vomiting in the pre-hospital setting: an intermediate analysis

    Campbell, Gareth; McLure, Sally; Duckett, Jay; Woollard, Malcolm; Newcombe, Robert; Clarke, Tom (2011-03)
    Background Intravenous morphine is the preferred drug for the treatment of moderate to severe pain by paramedics. Nausea and vomiting are believed to be frequent side-effects and routine co-administration of metoclopramide is common. In the absence of pre-hospital data to support this practice, we sought to determine the incidence of peri-opiate nausea and vomiting in an ambulance service which does not administer anti-emetics. Methods This prospective observational study is currently assessing the incidence of emesis in 400 patients attended by the North East Ambulance Service, aged above 17 years and receiving morphine, using a patient-scored Nausea and Vomiting Score (NVS: 0=no nausea or vomiting, 1=slight nausea, 2=moderate nausea, 3=severe nausea, 4=vomited once, 5=vomited twice or more). Results To date 145 patients have been recruited. Median NVS before morphine was 0 (range 0 to 6, inter-quartile range (IQR) 0 to 1): 54/141 (38%) of patients had some degree of nausea or vomiting. Median NVS on hospital arrival (after morphine) was 0 (range of 0 to 6, IQR 0 to 1): 54/130 (42%) patients had some degree of nausea or vomiting. The differences pre- vs. post-morphine in median NVS (p=0.98) and proportion of patients suffering nausea and vomiting are not statistically significant (p=0.98 and p=0.54 respectively). There were no significant correlations between pre-morphine pain score and pre-morphine NVS; post-morphine pain score and post-morphine NVS; pre-morphine NVS and total morphine dose; and post-morphine NVS and total morphine dose (Spearman's rank correlation 0.09, p=0.274; 0.07, p=0.44; 0.10, p=0.25; and 0.10, p=0.24 respectively). Conclusion and recommendations To date this study has found no evidence that pre-hospital administration of morphine is associated with an increased incidence or severity of nausea and vomiting and therefore does not appear to support the routine co-administration of metoclopramide. This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See:
  • A review of the pre-ROSC intranasal cooling effectiveness study

    Glencorse, Mark; Glencorse, Sandra (2011-06)
    Abstract published with permission. With the publication of the 2010 European Resuscitation Council Guidelines, therapeutic hypothermia has been recommended as part of the treatment algorhythm for the management of adult cardiac arrest. As ambulance services around the world struggle to decide on the best method of cooling a patient at the time of the return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC), the ground-breaking ‘PRINCE’ study has been published describing the novel approach of ‘trans-nasal’ evaporative cooling during the peri-arrest period. This study describes a significant difference found on arrival at hospital between the mean tympanic temperatures of the two groups (cooled vs control) following a period of cooling (34.2 °C [SD 1.5 °C] vs 35.5 °C [SD 0.9 °C], P<0.001). In addition, when looking at survival to discharge following out-of-hospital (OOH) cardiac arrest, there was a statistically significant difference in a subgroup of patients where CPR was commenced within 10 minutes of cardiac arrest (56.5% of trans-nasally cooled patients survived to discharge compared with 29.4% of control patients (P=0.04, relative risk =1.9)). This article examines the PRINCE study and considers the implication of this method of inducing therapeutic hypothermia in the out-of-hospital cardiac arrest patient within the UK.
  • Smallpox and the origins of vaccination

    McClelland, Graham (2011-05)
    Abstract published with permission. Smallpox is a highly infectious virus with a high mortality rate. Until the 19th century, smallpox epidemics regularly swept the UK. In some areas of the world, smallpox epidemics continued well into the 20th century. Smallpox has now been eradicated by an international effort led by the World Health Organisation (WHO). The eradication of smallpox was achieved by vaccination, and the history of vaccination is closely linked to the treatment of this disease. Despite being eradicated in the natural environment, there are still stocks of smallpox kept by two governments which are the cause of ongoing debate. Today, biological weapons are considered part of the threat posed by terrorist organizations and a deliberate smallpox release is a conceivable scenario. This article will describe smallpox, its connection with vaccination and why knowledge of diseases such as smallpox can be valuable to paramedics.
  • Lactate measurement in pre-hospital care: a review of the literature

    Byers, Sonia; Younger, Paul; McClelland, Graham (2012-06)
    Abstract published with permission. Background: Lactate has been identified as a useful marker of shock. Lactate can be measured in the pre-hospital environment rapidly and accurately. Method: A comprehensive literature search was conducted using a targeted search strategy. Additional literature was located through reference list searching and prior awareness by the authors. This identified a number of papers which were appraised for relevance. This appraisal identified 29 papers which were included in the review. Conclusion: Lactate has been shown to be measurable in the pre-hospital environment and to be prognostic of mortality. Lactate measurement needs to be linked to specific treatment algorithms with improved outcomes for patients in order to justify inclusion in pre-hospital practice.
  • Paramedic Initiated Lisinopril For Acute Stroke Treatment (PIL-FAST): study protocol for a pilot randomised controlled trial

    McLure, Sally; Shaw, Lisa; Price, Christopher I.M.; Howel, Denise; McColl, Elaine; Ford, Gary A. (2011-06)
  • Trauma systems: the anticipated impact of trauma divert in the North East

    Han, Kyee; Moy, R.; Denning, J. (2011-11)
    Introduction The advent of the new Trauma Network system will drive significant changes in the transport of trauma patients. We aimed to find out what the impact of the new trauma network would be on the two prospective trauma centres in the Northern region, in terms of increased workload. This could allow the centres to gain additional resources to provide care for these patients. Methods We conducted a retrospective audit of all trauma patients conveyed by North East Ambulance service during the month of October 2009. These patients were then assessed by the London Ambulance Service Trauma Divert Criteria. Any patients who would have bypassed their local hospital, and been taken to the nearest trauma centre were identified. Also identified were any patients at risk of airway compromise, who would have been transported to the nearest ED for stabilisation and secondary transfer. Patients transported by air ambulance were excluded, as they are already taken to the Trauma Centres. Results 3500 patients were identified during the initial search. Of these, 70 met the criteria for bypass, although 16 were transported to trauma centres as the nearest hospitals. 54 were transported to their nearest hospital, although under the criteria used, would have been taken to a trauma centre. 8 met the criteria for transfer to the nearest hospital, for airway protection. Based on geography of receiving hospital, we estimate that an additional 17 patients would have gone to James Cook University Hospital, and 29 to Newcastle General Hospital. Conclusion We conclude that introduction of the bypass guidelines would lead to an additional 46 patients being taken to a trauma centre in that month. This suggests that specific arrangements may need to be made to deal with the extra workload, and further investment may be required. This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See:
  • The clinical characteristics of false negative stroke patients: a systematic review

    McClelland, Graham; Jones, S.; Price, C.; Gibson, J.; Watkins, C. (2019-05-22)
  • A rapid response falls service – a new solution to a growing problem

    Charlton, Karl (2019-09-24)
    Background Falls are frequent in older people and are the primary cause of injury in adults aged 65+. Falls are associated with high mortality, morbidity and immobility. Many people who fall become frequent fallers, increasing the risk of serious injury; subsequently falls prevention is an NHS priority. A new rapid response falls service comprising of a Paramedic and Occupational Therapist was launched on 30th November 2018 but no evidence exists to determine the clinical or cost effectiveness of this intervention. This research aims to: Evaluate the rate of hospital admission for patients who pass through the intervention Evaluate the cost effectiveness of the intervention. Determine the prevalence of risk factors for falling in the study group & determine any differences between those admitted to hospital and those who are not Methods This study is an observational, prospective cohort study and aims to recruit all patients who pass through the intervention who meet the eligibility criteria. Calculations indicate a sample size of 677. With informed consent, we will collect anonymised data relating to each patient, their care episode and ambulance despatch data. These data will answer the aims of this study and provide detail on how various patient groups differ. Research ethics committee and HRA approval has been granted. Results Interim results will be presented in the form of graphs, frequencies, percentages and mean values to demonstrate the rate of hospital admission, cost effectiveness of the intervention and disease prevalence for the study group. A narrative will contextualise findings to date and generate discussion. We will provide the rate of consent, dissent and withdrawal for the cohort. Conclusions A summary of findings to date will be provided as well as implications for patients and the NHS. Limitations of this work will be discussed and opportunities for future research highlighted., This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See: DOI
  • Defining major trauma: a literature review

    Shaw, Gary; Thompson, Lee; Hill, Michael (2019-06-01)
    Introduction: Major trauma in the elderly population has been increasingly reported over the past decade. Compared to younger populations, elderly patients may experience major trauma as a result of low mechanisms of injury (MOIs) and as a result, existing definitions for ‘major trauma’ should be challenged. This literature review provides an overview of previous conceptualisations of defining ‘major trauma’ and considers their utility in relation to the pre-hospital phase of care. Methods: A systematic search strategy was performed using CINAHL, Cochrane Library and Web of Science (MEDLINE). Grey literature and key documents from cited references were also examined. Results: A total of 121 articles were included in the final analysis. Predominantly, retrospective scoring systems, such as the Injury Severity Score (ISS), were used to define major trauma. Pre-hospital variables considered indicative of major trauma included: fatal outcomes, injury type/pattern, deranged physiology and perceived need for treatment sequelae such as intensive care unit (ICU) admission, surgical intervention or the administration of blood products. Within the pre-hospital environment, retrospective scoring systems as a means of identifying major trauma are of limited utility and should not detract from the broader clinical picture. Similarly, although MOI is often a useful consideration, it should be used in conjunction with other factors in identifying major trauma patients. Conclusions: In the pre-hospital environment, retrospective scoring systems are not available and other variables must be considered. Based upon this review, a working definition of major trauma is suggested as: ‘A traumatic event resulting in fatal injury or significant injury with accompanying deranged physiology, regardless of MOI, and/or is predicted to require significant treatment sequelae such as ICU admission, surgical intervention, or the administration of blood products’. Abstract published with permission.
  • Storytelling via social media in the ambulance services

    Cotton, Mark; MacGregor, Murray; Warner, Claire; Bateson, Fiona (2019-09-11)
  • Falls: nine things to consider before dialling 999

    Mains, Jacqueline; Hayes, Catherine; Scott-Thomas, Jeanette; Barrigan, Marie; Graham, Yitka (2019-06)
  • Clinical decision-making and its place in paramedic practice

    Murdoch, Samantha (2019-05-07)
    In the pre-hospital environment, paramedics are required to make clinical decisions, often rapidly to ensure correct treatment and care is provided. Decisions made by paramedics majorly impacts on the life, clinical outcome, safety, health and wellbeing of their patients. With the introduction of the Newly Qualified Paramedic Framework, it potentially has never been more pertinent to examine the decision-making process-an integral part of paramedicine. The implementation of the NQP framework has prompted an exploration into clinical decision making and its place in an ever-evolving profession. Through examination of theories and frameworks, this article aims to identify the underpinning evidence that enables a paramedic to reach a competent decision and the barriers experienced in the process. Abstract published with permission.
  • A Retrospective Analysis of the Nature, Extent and Cost of Alcohol-Related Emergency Calls to the Ambulance Service in an English Region

    Duckett, Jay; Martin, N; Mason, H; Shen, J; Shevills, C; Kaner, E; Newbury-Birch, Dorothy (2012-01-18)
  • The research paramedic: a new role

    McClelland, Graham (2013-10)
  • A study into pre-alerts to North East hospitals for sepsis

    McClelland, Graham; Younger, Paul (2013-07)
    Abstract published with permission. A study of sepsis patients pre-alerted into hospitals was conducted in the North East of England from October 2011 to March 2013. This study was conducted to assess the effectiveness of the introduction of a sepsis education programme, which included a sepsis screening tool, and to try and establish the number of sepsis cases encountered by paramedics in the region. The results of this study show that the number of cases pre-alerted into the hospitals increased with the introduction of the screening tool, and gave some indications as to the number of sepsis patients encountered in pre-hospital care. We interpret the increase in pre-alerts as an increased awareness of sepsis, but see little impact on the treatment delivered by paramedics. We draw some conclusions on the number of suspected cases of sepsis seen in the pre-hospital environment but without linking to hospital data are unable to give definitive figures.
  • The frequency, characteristics and aetiology of stroke mimic presentations: a narrative review

    McClelland, Graham; Rodgers, Helen; Flynn, Darren; Price, Christopher I. (2019-02)
  • Assessment of Nutrition and Supplementation in Patients With Hip Fractures

    Charlton, Karl; Arkley, James; Dixon, Jan; Wilson, Faye; Ollivere, Benjamin John; Eardley, William (2019-10-17)

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