April 9, 2020

Background: Most guidelines recommend prehydration prior to iodine-based contrast media to prevent postcontrast acute kidney injury (PC-AKI) in patients with CKD.  There is, however, a lack of evidence for the effectiveness of this as well as the potential adverse effects from the hydration itself (i.e. congestive heart failure exacerbation). We have covered the AMACING trial on REBEL EM which was a randomized clinical trial evaluating prehydration with 0.9% normal saline vs no prehydration in patients with estimated glomerlular filtration rates of 30 – 59mL/min/1.73m2.  In that study there was no difference in their primary outcome of contrast induced nephropathy (now called postcontrast acute kidney injury - PC-AKI) at 2 – 6 days after IV contrast (2.7% with prehydration vs 2.6% without prehydration). The trial we are are covering today, the Kompas trial, directly compared prehydration with sodium bicarbonate vs no prehydration prior to non-emergent intravenous contrast-enhanced CT in patients with CKD stage 3.

January 16, 2020

Background: Computed tomography pulmonary angiography (CTPA) is the current gold standard for diagnosing acute pulmonary embolism in the ED.  It has a high sensitivity, and specificity, is readily available, and can establish analternative diagnoses.  One issue with CTPA is that many hospital protocols create barriers for patients with chronic kidney disease or acute kidney injury (AKI) protocols in place from getting the necessary IV contrast.  There are several studies [2][3][4] that have evaluated the causal relationship between contrast exposure and nephrotoxicity. However, most of these studies are observational and retrospective in nature. The issue with retrospective studies is that they often cannot control for confounders and observational studies cannot give us causation, only association. We now have another retrospective observational study asking the same question, which has the inherent issues of previous studies.

April 4, 2019

Background: Computed tomography (CT) scans using IV contrast agents are one of the most common imaging modalities used in the emergency department (ED). The reason for this is no secret. CT scans with IV contrast offer a large amount of information on patients when limited information is available, they are diagnostic of many conditions with good performance characteristics, and they are often requested by consultants.   Many patients get suboptimal studies without IV contrast due to fear of contrast induced nephropathy (CIN). However, more recent studies suggest that with the use of iso- and low-osmolar contrast agents (almost universally used today) this concern is unwarranted.  Most studies on this topic have focused on unselected populations, and not focused on patient groups at higher risk for AKI, including those with sepsis.

February 26, 2019

Online educational resources, social media, and asynchronous education increasingly dominate innovation and continuing medical education for practicing emergency physicians. The “Free Open-Access Medical Education” (FOAM) movement has utilized the power of global connectivity to drive narrowing of the knowledge translation window, however critics have urged caution and warned of error, as many of these resources lack peer review or quality control [1]. REBEL EM is an online educational resource widely used throughout the FOAM community, garnering an average of 3,000 - 30,000 views/engagements per educational post, and satisfying all quality indicators that have been previously identified as markers of reliability and usability for digital scholarship [2]. To this end, we at REBEL EM are conducting a survey looking at rates of certain medication usage in the treatment of renal colic.  This is the follow up survey after the publication of the LIDOKET trial.

February 18, 2019

Background: The use of intravenous lidocaine for analgesia in patients presenting to the emergency department (ED) with renal colic has gained recent traction and interest, and was previously explored on the REBEL EM blog. Literature has been mixed, with one trial (Soleimanpour 2012) demonstrating analgesic benefit, but two smaller trials (Firouzian 2016) (Motamed 2017) finding no such role for IV lidocaine. Nonetheless, uptake has been brisk (Fitzpatrick 2016). The authors of this study (The LIDOKET Trial) sought to better define the utility of IV lidocaine for the treatment of renal colic.