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Patients Under the Influence

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Presentation on theme: "Patients Under the Influence"— Presentation transcript:

0 International Trauma Life Support, 7e
Patients Under the Influence of Alcohol or Drugs 20 Key Lecture Points Review commonly abused drugs and their common signs and symptoms. Review clues of drug use by the patient. Review the pertinent history you should obtain when managing a patient who may be under the influence of drugs. Explain how to interact with a patient who is under the influence of drugs. Explain how to manage the patient who is injured, under the influence, and uncooperative. Be familiar with and discuss your local laws regarding restraining a patient.

1 Patients Under the Influence
Courtesy of Louis B. Mallory, MBA, REMT-P

2 Overview Signs and symptoms of under influence of alcohol and/or drugs
Five strategies to ensure cooperation Situations to restrain patients and how to handle an uncooperative patient Special considerations for assessment and management with substance abuse

3 Under Influence Trauma and alcohol or drugs
Car crashes involving alcohol Substance abusers at greater risk of injury High rate of alcohol and drug use in fatalities Suspicion of alcohol or drug influence Use high index of suspicion, physical exam, history, bystanders, evidence at scene to identify NOTE: Substance abuse includes abuse of alcohol, drugs, or both. Substance abuse is associated with a number of traumatic events, often resulting from accidents, car crashes, suicides, homicides, and other violent crimes. One study found a high rate of alcohol and illicit drug use in patients who die from trauma (Journal of American College of Surgeons). Number of seriously injured trauma patients are under influence of alcohol or some other substance. History supplied by the patient or bystanders can also help to establish whether substance abuse is involved. Obtain history from patient and bystanders, but remember many patients (and bystanders) deny substance use. If possible, inspect patient's surroundings for clues that drugs or alcohol may have been used. Note any alcoholic beverage bottles, pill containers, injection equipment, smoking paraphernalia, or unusual odors.

4 Patients Under Influence
Unique challenges for management Under the influence vs. an emergency May need to alter management techniques Many initially refuse treatment Interaction and cooperation Consult local protocol, medical direction, and law enforcement for assistance It is extremely difficult to differentiate between patients under the influence and those experiencing a medical and/or trauma emergency.

5 Assessment ITLS Primary and Secondary Surveys Note: Mental status
Respiration Speech Pupils Needle marks IMAGE: Needle marks. NOTE: Other items in list covered on next slides. ITLS Primary and Secondary Surveys should follow the ITLS guidelines. These are particular aspects to be aware of when conducting the exam when you suspect the patient has abused substances. © Pearson

6 Mental Status Altered mental status Euphoria Psychosis Paranoia
Confusion Disorientation Due to head injury, shock, hypoglycemia until proven otherwise Remember that altered level of consciousness is always due to a head injury, shock, or hypoglycemia, until proven otherwise. An altered mental status can be seen in every form of substance abuse. Courtesy of Louis B. Mallory, MBA, REMT-P

7 Under Influence Respirations Speech Significantly depressed Slurred
Opiates and sedatives Speech Slurred Alcohol or sedatives Ramble Hallucinogens Courtesy of Louis B. Mallory, MBA, REMT-P

8 Pupils Constricted Dilated Fixed and dilated Opiates
Early barbiturate use Dilated Amphetamines Cocaine Hallucinogens Marijuana Fixed and dilated High-dose barbiturates Courtesy of Louis B. Mallory, MBA, REMT-P

9 Commonly Abused Drugs IMAGE: Table 20-1 Commonly Abused Drugs.

10 Interaction Interaction style influences cooperation
Offensive and judgmental Can cause patients to be uncooperative Can lengthen on-scene time Positive and nonjudgmental Can cause patients to be cooperative Easier assessment with all appropriate interventions Trauma patients under the influence of alcohol or drugs can challenge the provider not only by their traumatic injuries, but also by their attitudes. The way in which you interact with patients who have abused substances can determine if the patient will be cooperative or uncooperative. How you speak to these patients can be as important as what you are doing for them.

11 Interaction Strategies
Improving cooperation Identify yourself and orient patient to surroundings Treat with respect and avoid being judgmental Acknowledge concerns and feelings Let patients know what will be required of them Ask closed-ended questions for history Ask them their name and how they would like to be addressed. With this patient population, it may be necessary to orient them to place, date, and what is going on. These patients may need to be reoriented frequently. Often, a lack of respect can be heard in tone of your voice or how you say things, not just in what you say. The patient who is scared or confused may be more comfortable with what is taking place if you recognize and address these feelings. Be gentle but firm. Explain all treatment interventions before they are performed. Patients may be confused and not realize that they need to hold still while you are trying to stabilize them on a backboard. Closed-ended questions are questions that can be answered with a yes or no. These patients may only be able to concentrate for short periods of time, and they may ramble when asked open-ended questions that require a full answer. Consider getting as much of history as you can from relatives, friends, or bystanders.

12 Uncooperative Patient
Interacting with uncooperative patients: Be firm Set limits to behavior Consider physical restraint Only if unable to provide adequate care Show of force may be enough

13 Restraints Know local protocols Law enforcement Threat to self
Types of restraints Spinal immobilization Reeves sleeve Soft restraints Chemical In some circumstances, chemical restraints may be required. Know requirements in local jurisdiction for restraining patients against their will. Know who can restrain, under what conditions a patient can be restrained, and what types of devices can be used, like soft restraints. Securely strapping a patient to a backboard with use of a cervical collar and head motion-restriction device will serve to restrain most patients. Caution must be taken not to worsen any current injuries or inflict any new ones. Restrained patients may struggle so hard that spinal motion restriction is rendered ineffective. Reeves sleeve is one of the few pieces of equipment that is very effective in providing both restraint and motion restriction. Crews should plan and practice procedures for restraining patients. Reassess restrained patients often. © Pearson

14 Patients Under Influence
ITLS Primary and Secondary Surveys Note: High risk for infection Look for clues to substance abuse Finger-stick glucose for altered mental status Cardiac monitoring for altered mental status High-flow oxygen and capnography Hypothermia and hypotension common ITLS approach to patient care will work well, even with patients under the influence of alcohol or drugs. This patient population includes people who are at high risk for infection with hepatitis B, hepatitis C, and HIV.

15 Specific Treatments IMAGE: Table 20-2 Drug Categories and Specific Treatments to Consider. *Naloxone should be titrated to patient's respirations. Repeated doses may be indicated as narcotic may last longer than effects of naloxone. **Flumazenil use is controversial; it can precipitate seizures in patients dependent on benzodiazepines. Further, flumazenil use may cause seizures in those who have been using benzodiazepines to prevent seizures and in those patients who have overdosed on tricyclic antidepressants. Flumazenil should only be given on direct order of medical direction.

16 NIDA 2009 USA Study Teenage drug use decreasing
Belief MDMA (ecstasy) not harmful Concerned with nonmedical use of: Hydrocodone (Vicodin) Oxycodone (OxyContin) Based upon a 2009 survey of teenagers, The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) concluded that many drug use trends are declining. However, they reported that the perception that the Methylenedioxymethamphetamie MDMA (ecstasy) is harmful is going down and this might be a precursor to an increase in use of this drug. The NIDA also expressed concern about the nonmedical use of the narcotics Vicodin (hydrocodone) and OxyContin (oxycodone).

17 Summary Know signs and symptoms of abuse:
Recognize patient who may be impaired Attention to specific areas for critical changes Provide lifesaving interventions for substances Interaction strategies for improving patient cooperation are very important Safety is primary concern People who abuse alcohol and drugs are frequently involved in trauma. Be prepared to treat them often. Determining that your patient has abused some substance will allow you to pay attention to specific areas for critical changes as well as provide lifesaving interventions that may be indicated for individual substances. If you must restrain a patient for his or her safety, do so in a preplanned manner that is most sensitive to your patient's needs.

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