Archive for category: Cardiovascular

Colchicine for Treatment of Pericarditis

11 Aug
August 11, 2014

Acute and recurrent pericarditis are frequently diagnosed in the emergency department.  Traditionally, treatment has consisted of anti-inflammatory medications (eg. ASA or NSAIDs) or corticosteroids.  Colchicine is an underutilized therapy for pericarditis and provides significant benefit when combined with NSAIDs/ASA. Addition of colchicine to standard therapy results in earlier reduction in pericarditis symptoms, greater remission at […]

Elevated Asymptomatic Hypertension: To Treat or Not to Treat?

21 Jul
July 21, 2014

As emergency physicians, we are constantly on the look out for elevated blood pressures and the potential devastating consequences. We are concerned about intracranial bleeds and acute pulmonary edema from heart failure. But what about the patient that comes in with high blood pressures, yet has no symptoms? Do we need to treat the number or […]

Update on Age-Adjusted D-Dimer

11 Jul
July 11, 2014

D-dimer has been shown to increase with age, which can cause a lower specificity (i.e. more false positive tests) in older patients. The result of this would be that older patients would often have more diagnostic imaging or downstream testing, but on the other hand, maybe a higher cut-off d-dimer value may lead to increased […]

R.E.B.E.L. ECG of the Week: LBBB and STEMI

09 Jun
June 9, 2014

R.E.B.E.L. ECG of the Week

89 year old male with PMH of hypertension, stage 3 chronic kidney disease with chief complaint of shortness of breath. Several days ago patient had a laminectomy for radicular pain. He was doing fine post-operatively and began to develop gradual shortness of breath.  He had no complaints of chest pain, nausea/vomiting, fevers, diaphoresis, but did have some weakness.  There were no prior ECGs for comparison.

BP: 98/48 HR: 103 RR: 18 O2 on RA: 94% Temp: 38.6

JVD to the angle of the mandible
Bibasilar Crackles
Sinus Tachycardia
Bilateral lower extremity pitting edema

Labs: Na 125, K+ 4.2, Creatinine 2, BNP > 2500

ECG from triage is shown… Read more →

Left Ventricular Assist Device

29 May
May 29, 2014

The first left ventricular assist device (LVAD) was performed in 1984 and since that time there is an increasingly growing population of patients with LVADs.  This means ED physicians will be seeing more and more of these patients in the ED and should have a basic understanding of how these devices work and have an […]

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