Author Archive for: flodeserto

Approach to the Critically Ill Child: Shock

15 Oct
October 15, 2018

If you mainly treat adults or both adults and children like me, then you have probably heard the (very annoying) quote, “kids are not just small adults”, and so I won’t say it again. Well, I guess I just did, but at least I wont stop at this quote, but attempt to explain how kids are not small adults, and how this may impact their care in the emergency department and the intensive care unit.

Nearly all organ systems of young children are immature and developing throughout childhood and on into adulthood, including the cardiovascular system. Without a basic understanding of the key physiologic differences, the emergency and intensive care physicians will be ill equipped to care for the critical ill child.

To understand how kids with shock present differently than adults, it’s important to discuss a few basic differences regarding intravascular volume and cardiovascular system in children especially neonates and infants (1-24 months of age). Also remember shock is defined the exact same way as it would be in adults even though the presentation and underlying physiology may differ. Shock is simply a state where tissue/organ blood flow is inadequate to meet tissue/organ metabolic demands. Read more →

Simplifying Mechanical Ventilation – Part 6 – Choosing Your Initial Settings

27 Aug
August 27, 2018

Choosing Your Initial Settings: I hope you now see what physiologies to consider when setting up the ventilator and your goals for each. If your patient doesn’t fit into one of these three categories, then I set up my ventilator as if I was managing a patient who has refractory hypoxemia to maintain a lung protective strategy even if they don’t think they have very significant lung disease. Maintaining a lung protective strategy with low tidal volume ventilation has been shown to decrease ventilator induced lung injury and minimize harm, even in patients without refractory hypoxemia and ARDS (1-2). Read more →

High Flow Nasal Cannula (HFNC) – Part 2: Adult & Pediatric Indications

23 Aug
August 23, 2018

The use of heated and humidified high flow nasal cannula has become increasing popular in the treatment of patients with acute respiratory failure through all age groups.  In part 1 we summarized how High Flow Nasal Cannula (HFNC) works.  In part 2, we will discuss the main indications for its use in adult and pediatric patients. Read more →

High Flow Nasal Cannula (HFNC) – Part 1: How It Works

20 Aug
August 20, 2018

The use of heated and humidified high flow nasal cannula (HFNC) has become increasingly popular in the treatment of patients with acute respiratory failure through all age groups.  I first started using it as a pediatric intensive care fellow, but had little knowledge of how it actually worked.  I noticed a few years after using it successfully in children, mainly with severe bronchiolitis, that we began to use it in the adult intensive care unit as well.  It seems over the past several years many studies have come out reviewing the mechanisms of action as well as its use in a variety of conditions.  In this part we will summarize how it works and for part 2 we will discuss the main indications for its use in adult and pediatric patients. Read more →

The Approach To The Most Common Cardiac Dysrhythmia: 8 Causes of Sinus Tachycardia

18 Jul
July 18, 2018

Have you ever heard an entire lecture on sinus tachycardia? Neither have I. It is the most common cardiac dysrhythmia seen in critically ill adults and kids, but it is the least frequently talked about. Sinus tachycardia may not be the sexiest rhythm and we don’t think of cardioverting it or giving some new anti-arrhythmic drug, but it is a sign that something may be seriously wrong. To be fair, it’s not the sinus tachycardia we are really worried about, but rather what’s causing the sinus tachycardia that should be our main concern. Read more →