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Dizziness/nausea post being backboarded

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Patient in motor vehicle crash, neck/back pain severe. Board and collared. States feeling dizzy after being boarded. Any (general) idea what could be the cause of this?

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Yes, lying on their back in a moving ambulance and not being able to sit up. Yep, I'd put 5 bucks down as that is probably the answer.

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What Ruff said as well as stress from the accident, head injury, brain tumor to name a few others.

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On slow days when we have EMT students, I like to get them to experience being strapped down on a spine board in a moving ambulance. It's a weird feeling, even for a healthy person, especially when the vehicle turns a corner. It certainly makes me feel dizzy, too.

Sometimes tilting the board for a while helps alleviate the dizziness, and as a plus you'll also be ready if the dizziness turns to nausea.

You can also try dimming the lights, that's worked for my patients in the past, but of course this is only really useful when you don't need the lights on.

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Could also be just as simple as motion sickness form traveling backwards!

This is one of the reasons I consider antiemetic use in spinaled patients to be basic airway protection regardless of nausea.

From a BLS perspective, 02 may help the nausea as well.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11794455

Reported pain remained greater in the oxygen group. However, those given oxygen had less nausea (22 +/- 29 vs 54 +/- 38 mm; P<.001) and vomiting (4 vs 19 episodes; P<.001),

Edited by mobey

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It sometimes helps to elevate the head of the board. It just gives a slightly better view of the world, aiding balance and awareness of the world. Being able to see only the lights on the ceiling are disorienting to anybody

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Turn on the AC, cover them with a blanket, maybe a little O2, nasal cannula.. They'll be fine, it's probably motion sickness. Rode in the ambo for years before I was on the cot as the patient. BP was low. Blood loss...caused by #@%#@^#%^#ing EMS. They had me flat with my legs raised. Said to the person that was normally my driver, dude, you gotta raise my head, or drop my legs, I'm gonna ralph. He laughed. Like, no srsly, grab my arm and gimme a bag or you're getting a lap-full of hamburger. I hate when I have to explain how to provide simple care, but what pissed me off even more, was explaining it - as the patient. :wtf:

What Ruff said as well as stress from the accident, head injury, brain tumor to name a few others.

Yes, I see, well, it looks like a paper cut to me sir. But we'll incise it to have a better look, throw a few sutures in it; start you on IV antibiotics, maybe x-ray the finger, and check for a brain tumor.

Just in case.

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Yes, I see, well, it looks like a paper cut to me sir. But we'll incise it to have a better look, throw a few sutures in it; start you on IV antibiotics, maybe x-ray the finger, and check for a brain tumor.

Just in case.

You backboard for papercuts? That's some pretty progressive protocols, lol. You forgot to add the biopsy and local infiltration of witch hazel.

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You backboard for papercuts? That's some pretty progressive protocols, lol. You forgot to add the biopsy and local infiltration of witch hazel.

And doc, don't forget the evac via the local helicopter crew to the level 1 trauma center to fix that papercut.

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And doc, don't forget the evac via the local helicopter crew to the level 1 trauma center to fix that papercut.

Wouldn't that be a good case for your Harrier? With VTOL capabilities, you could get almost anywhere. Imagine the looks on the firemonkeys faces when they see you drop down at the LZ in a jet and not a helicopter.

Edited by ERDoc

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