Diagnosis of Pneumoperitoneum with Bedside Ultrasound

Volume 16, Issue 2, March 2015
Alice Chao, MD et al.

An 86-year-old female was brought in by ambulance for severe abdominal and back pain. She was hypotensive en route and appeared to be in distress upon arrival to the emergency department. Her abdomen was tense and distended with diffuse tenderness to palpation present.

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Spontaneous Pneumomediastinum on Bedside Ultrasound: Case Report and Review of the Literature

Volume 16, Issue 2, March 2015
Sybil Zachariah, MD et al.

Spontaneous pneumomediastinum is a rare disease process with no clear etiology, although it is thought to be related to changes in intrathoracic pressure causing chest pain and dyspnea. We present a case of a 17-year-old male with acute chest pain evaluated initially by bedside ultrasound, which showed normal lung sliding but poor visualization of the parasternal and apical cardiac views due to significant air artifact, representing air in the thoracic cavity. The diagnosis was later verified by chest radiograph. We present a case report on ultrasound-diagnosed pneumomediastinum, and we review the diagnostic modalities to date.

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Bedside Ultrasound Identification of Infectious Flexor Tenosynovitis in the Emergency Department

Volume 16, Issue 2, March 2015
Kevin Padrez, MD et al.

Infectious flexor tenosynovitis (FTS) is a serious infection of the hand and wrist that can lead to necrosis and amputation without prompt diagnosis and surgical debridement. Despite the growing use of point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) by emergency physicians there is only one reported case of the use of POCUS for the diagnosis of infectious FTS in the emergency department setting. We present a case of a 58 year-old man where POCUS identified tissue necrosis and fluid along the flexor tendon sheath of the hand. Subsequent surgical pathology confirmed the diagnosis of infectious FTS.

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Can Emergency Physicians Perform Common Carotid Doppler Flow Measurements to Assess Volume Responsiveness?

Volume 16, Issue 2, March 2015
Lori A. Stolz, MD et al.

Common carotid flow measurements may be clinically useful to determine volume responsiveness. The objective of this study was to assess the ability of emergency physicians (EP) to obtain sonographic images and measurements of the common carotid artery velocity time integral (VTi) for potential use in assessing volume responsiveness in the clinical setting.

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Non-thrombotic Abnormalities on Lower Extremity Venous Duplex Ultrasound Examinations

Volume 16, Issue 2, March 2015
Srikar Adhikari, MD, MS et al.

Emergency physician-performed compression ultrasonography focuses primarily on the evaluation of the proximal veins of the lower extremity in patients with suspected deep venous thrombosis (DVT). A detailed sonographic evaluation of lower extremity is not performed. The objective of this study was to determine the prevalence of non-thrombotic findings on comprehensive lower extremity venous duplex ultrasound (US) examinations performed on emergency department (ED) patients.

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Achilles Tendon Rupture

Volume 16, Issue 1, January 2015
Sean P. Stickles, MD et al.

A 60-year-old man presented to the emergency department complaining of acute onset posterior ankle pain. He reported playing tennis earlier in the afternoon when he suddenly stopped and pivoted, noting a “pop” sensation and pain to the right posterior ankle.

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Half-dose Alteplase for Sub-massive Pulmonary Embolism Directed by Emergency Department Point-of-care Ultrasound

Volume 16, Issue 1, January 2015
Richard Amini, MD et al.

This report describes a patient with sub-massive pulmonary embolism (PE) who was successfully treated with half-dose thrombolytics guided by the use of point-of-care (POC) ultrasound. In this case, POC ultrasound was the only possible imaging since computed tomography was contraindicated.

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Ultrasound Distinguishes Ascites from a Large Ovarian Fluid-Filled Cyst

Volume 15, Issue 7, November 2014
Marissa Camilon, MD et al.

A 51-year-old woman with Hepatitis C was referred to the emergency department (ED) for “massive ascites.” She reported increasing abdominal girth for six months with intermittent abdominal pain. An outpatient ultrasound performed two weeks prior to ED presentation was interpreted by a radiologist as “massive ascites, no masses within the abdomen” on the paper report the patient brought with her. In the ED, the patient was afebrile with normal vital signs. Her abdomen was distended with mild right upper quadrant tenderness.

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Sydenham Chorea: Rare Consequence of Rheumatic Fever

Volume 15, Issue 7, November 2014
Paul J. Myers, DO, et al.

Sydenham Chorea (SC) is an acute rheumatic fever complication. SC is the most common acquired childhood chorea, usually affecting children five to fifteen years of age.1 It occurs following an untreated group A streptococcal infection and a latent period of one to six months.1,2 Despite rheumatic fever diminishing, 18% to 36% of acute rheumatic fever patients develop SC.3 Full recovery often takes several months; some patients suffer permanent neurologic sequelae.1

An 11-year old male presented to the Emergency Department with two days of uncontrolled body twitching. The movements affected his right arm and leg, with occasional lip twitches; he experienced intermittent confusion and hyperactivity. The patient denied recent illness, but recalled a fever with headache and vomiting several months prior. Besides the above findings, his physical examination was normal.

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A Woman with Dyspnea and Hemoptysis

Volume 15, Issue 7, November 2014
Steven G. Schauer, DO et al.

A 55-year-old female presented to the emergency department at a small community hospital with cough, fever, dyspnea and blood-streaked sputum. A chest radiograph was ordered.

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From the Heart: Interatrial Septal Aneurysm Identified on Bedside Ultrasound

Volume 15, Issue 6, September 2014
Michael Butterfield, MD, MS, MPH et al.

A 61 year-old man presented to the Emergency Department for one day of nonspecific chest pain. Bedside echocardiogram performed by the emergency physician revealed normal systolic cardiac function but also showed a large ( > 10mm) bicornuate interatrial septal aneurysm (IASA) projecting into the right atrium (Figure 1, Video 1). There was no evidence of intraatrial thrombus. A formal echocardiogram performed later that day confirmed the diagnosis and also detected a patent foramen ovale (PFO) with a left-to-right shunt that reversed with Valsalva maneuver.

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Diagnosis of Fournier’s Gangrene on Bedside Ultrasound

Volume 15, Issue 2, March 2014
Christopher Coyne, MD et al.

A previously healthy 48 year-old male presented to the hospital with a 4-week history of “pimples” on his scrotum. This condition had progressively worsened, resulting in increased pain, swelling and redness to the genital region and buttocks.

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Diagnosis of Necrotizing Faciitis with Bedside Ultrasound: the STAFF Exam

Volume XV, Issue 1, February 2014
Erik Castleberg, MD et al.

We propose the STAFF ultrasound exam may be beneficial in the rapid evaluation of unstable patients with consideration of necrotizing fasciitis, in a similar fashion to the current use of a focused assessment with sonography for trauma exam in the setting of trauma.

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Multimedia Education Increases Elder Knowledge of Emergency Department Care

Introduction: The purpose of this study was to evaluate a multi-media education intervention as a method for informing independently living elders about ED care. The program delivered messages categorically as, the number of tests, providers, decisions and disposition decision making.
Conclusion: A short video with graphic side-bar information is an effective educational strategy to improve elder understanding of expectations during a hypothetical ED encounter following calling 911.

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Contact Information

WestJEM/ Department of Emergency Medicine
UC Irvine Health

3800 W Chapman Ave Ste 3200
Orange, CA 92868, USA
Phone: 1-714-456-6389


ISSN: 1936-900X
e-ISSN: 1936-9018

ISSN: 2474-252X

Our Philosophy

Emergency Medicine is a specialty which closely reflects societal challenges and consequences of public policy decisions. The emergency department specifically deals with social injustice, health and economic disparities, violence, substance abuse, and disaster preparedness and response. This journal focuses on how emergency care affects the health of the community and population, and conversely, how these societal challenges affect the composition of the patient population who seek care in the emergency department. The development of better systems to provide emergency care, including technology solutions, is critical to enhancing population health.