Podcast #261: Icatibant

Author: Aaron Lessen, M.D.

Educational Pearls

  • Icatibant was introduced to treat ACE-inhibitor induced angioendema.
  • This type of angioedema is refractory to epinephrine and antihistamines, and is likely mediated by elevated bradykinin.(which is inactivated by ATII and ACE).
  • Icatibant initially was shown to reduce facial swelling and airway obstruction in the setting of ACE-I angioedema, but later, better-powered studies showed that it had no benefit compared to standard treatment.

References: Sinert R et al. Randomized Trial of Icatibant for Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitor-Induced Upper Airway Angioedema. J Allergy Clin Immunol Pract 2017. PMID: 28552382

Podcast #260: Preoxygenation

Author: David Rosenberg, M.D.

Educational Pearls

  • Preoxygenation is done before rapid sequence intubation, and should be done even if SaO2 is at 100%.
  • Preoxygenation is done to fill the lungs with oxygen rather than ambient air, which is only 20% O2. While the patient is paralyzed, the O2-filled lungs will continue to oxygenate venous blood, buying you more time for intubation.  
  • BiPAP is an effective tool for pre-oxygenation.

References: https://lifeinthefastlane.com/ccc/preoxygenation/

Podcast #259: Transient Ischemic Attacks

Author: Peter Bakes, M.D.

Educational Pearls

  • A TIA is defined as focal neurological deficit that resolves within 24 hours and has negative imaging. The etiology is a transient thrombus, embolus, or narrowing of a branch of a cerebral artery.
  • Screening tests are generally negative and low-yield. MRI and vascular imaging are usually done to look for reversible causes.
  • Patients presenting with TIA are usually admitted because of a higher risk for stroke. However, there are some patients that are low-risk and do not require admission. Risk can be assessed using the “ABCD” mnemonic: Age>60, BP (history of HTN), Clinical presentation (area of deficit), Diabetes/Duration of symptoms. See reference link for scoring sheet.
  • Patients with a low enough score may be eligible for outpatient follow-up.

References: http://www.stroke.org/sites/default/files/resources/tia-abcd2-tool.pdf?docID

Podcast #258: REBOA

Author: Dylan Luyten, M.D.

Educational Pearls

  • Resuscitative Endovascular Balloon Occlusion of the Aorta (REBOA).
  • Exsanguination is a major cause of mortality in trauma
  • One temporizing technique to buy time to definitive hemorrhage control is to occlude the aorta thereby shunting blood away from pelvis and lower extremities, increasing cardiac afterload to increase myocardial and brain perfusion.
  • Rather than perform a thoracotomy to cross clamp aorta, a REBOA catheter may be introduced into the aorta via the common femoral artery and a balloon inflated in the descending aorta to occlude it.
  • The indications for REBOA include PEA arrest of brief duration attributable to exsanguination for sub-diaphragmatic source in a young, healthy patient, or severe hypovolemic shock or those in an agonal state due to non-compressible hemorrhage not responding to volume and in whom obstructive cause of shock has been ruled out.
  • Contraindicated in prolonged arrest, suspected proximal aortic injury, advanced age/comorbidities.
  • Controversies and evidence: 
    • High quality evidence is lacking – as it is for much of what we do and even consider standard of care in trauma. It has not been shown to improve survival, which is hard to demonstrate.
    • Role in remote settings vs trauma centers unclear.
    • Further refinements of indication for use are likely to occur with time and experience.
  • Summarize – REBOA is a promising relatively new technology that may have potential to improve outcomes in the sickest of trauma patients.

Podcast #257: Strangulation

Educational Pearls

  • Strangulation is common in cases of domestic violence and sexual assault, and it is associated with higher mortality
  • People who have been strangled have a higher rate of stroke due to vascular damage to carotid artery
  • Only 50% of people who die from strangulation show external signs of trauma
  • CTA should be done in all those who experience LOC or incontinence from strangulation  
  • 50-60sec of strangulation is all that is required to produce LOC

References: http://epmonthly.com/article/clinical-focus-strangulation-and-hanging-injuries/

Podcast #256: Fentanyl Ingestion


Don Stader, M.D & Rachael Duncan, PharmD BCPS BCCCP

Educational Pearls

  • Fentanyl patches may be abused in many ways, including changing the patches more frequently, chewing them, extracting the fentanyl in a tea, and administering them rectally.
  • Fentanyl is very lipophilic and has a fast onset, but it has a very low bioavailability when given enterally, because it does not survive the stomach and 1st pass metabolism. It can be given IV, intranasal, through the buccal mucosa, or transdermal.
  • When patients present with fentanyl overdose due to ingestion of a patch, it is more important to find out how long the patient had the patch in their mouth, since that is the principal form of absorption.

References: http://www.medscape.org/viewarticle/518441_3

Deep Dive #6: Bacteriuria and the Elderly

Author: Heidi Wald, MD, MSPH 

Associate Professor of Medicine – University of Colorado School of Medicine, Physician Advisor – Colorado Hospital Association

Dr. Heidi Wald explains common misconceptions of UTI’s in elderly patients and provides tips on how to properly identify them.


Trestioreanu , Adi Lador , May-Tal Sauerbrun-Cutler and Leonard Leibovici  Antibiotics for asymptomatic bacteriuria  Cochrane Collaborative Online Publication Date: April 2015.

Trautner BW, Bhimani RD, Amspoker AB, et al. Development and validation of an algorithm to recalibrate mental models and reduce diagnostic errors associated with catheter-associated bacteriuria. BMC Med Inform Decis Mak 2013;13:48.

Trautner BW, Grigoryan L, Petersen NJ, et al. Effectiveness of an Antimicrobial Stewardship Approach for Urinary Catheter Associated Asymptomatic Bacteriuria. JAMA Intern Med 2015.

D’Agata ELoeb MB, and Mitchell.  Challenges in assessing nursing home residents with advanced dementia for suspected urinary tract infections. J Am Geriatr Soc.2013 Jan;61(1):62-6. doi: 10.1111/jgs.12070.

Stone ND, Ashraf MS, Calder J, et al. Surveillance definitions of infections in long-term care facilities: revisiting the McGeer criteria. Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol 2012;33:965-77.

Podcast #255: Posterior Vitreous Detachment

Author: Erik Verzemnieks, M.D.

Educational Pearls

  • Posterior vitreous detachment is the tearing of the lining in the back of of the eye.
  • Patients often present with loss of vision and floaters.
  • Diagnosis can be made with US.
  • This is a benign diagnosis, but 10-15% can progress to retinal detachment , so follow up  with ophthalmology is recommended.

References: http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/513226