EMS EXPO 2007 Top Product Picks

EMS EXPO 2007 Top Product Picks

Article Dec 31, 2007

CYANOKIT from Bound Tree Medical

     When you think of cyanide, it may conjure up bad images-possibly a movie scene where a soon-to-be-interrogated spy slips a hidden capsule into his mouth, bites down and is dead in the blink of an eye. The reality is that cyanide has legitimate uses in both industry and technology, and we use close to two billion pounds in the U.S. annually. But irrespective of the source, when cyanide enters the human body, it can have devastating or fatal effects.

     While an industrial accident involving cyanide is a possibility, the most likely reason EMS would see a cyanide exposure would be a house fire. Many items found in your average home, from foam insulation to flooring products to nylon or rayon materials, are petroleum-based. When burned, these products generate cyanide as a product of incomplete combustion. For years, we have focused mainly on carbon monoxide (CO) as a major fire issue, and indeed it is. However, studies have shown that a significant number of CO fatalities have toxic cyanide levels as well.

     In the past, treatment for an actual or suspected cyanide poisoning was complicated and time-consuming. Three separate medications had to be given in a specific order to victims. Unfortunately, the meds' mechanism of action also produced methemoglobin. When this is combined with carboxyhemoglobin, you get a patient with significantly decreased oxygen-carrying capability who can quickly become hypoxic, ischemic, anoxic and dead.

     The CYANOKIT from Bound Tree Medical takes a revolutionary approach to managing cyanide poisoning. It uses an IV infusion of five grams of hydroxocobalamin, which is actually vitamin B12a. Though safely used in Europe for more than 10 years, it was only recently approved for use in the U.S. Because this drug does not produce the methemoglobin side effect, it is a far safer intervention. In fact, hydroxocobalamin is safe enough to be used on a suspected cyanide poisoning, as its mechanism of action won't make the patient sicker.

     The CYANOKIT is a quantum leap in care for suspected and known cases of cyanide poisoning.

     For more: www.boundtree.com; 800/533-0523.

SwiftGrip Rapid Intubation System from Dreamwest Innovations

     A previous top pick in 2006, the SwiftGrip Rapid Intubation System (RIS) returns to the Top 20 for 2007, thanks to continued refinement of this already innovative product.

     The new and improved SwiftGrip system has been modified to include angled and slightly larger posts for securing the head strap, making it more ergonomically friendly. While I felt the original design performed well and secured quickly, by angling the posts and increasing their size, it now seems much easier to use and even more secure. Another nice addition is the inclusion of a C-clamp that will fit sizes 14–18-Fr orogastric tubes.

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     Should you misplace the SwiftGrip securing device on the ET tube, the RIS now features tabs to allow for quicker unlocking and repositioning, saving valuable seconds in those critical airway moments when the last thing you need is to be fiddling around with a misplaced securing device. In addition, this version of the SwiftGrip features larger safety flanges for better security. Last but not least, the RIS comes with everything preattached in the following sizes: 6.5, 7.0, 7.5 and 8.0. The stylet is already in place, and the syringe is attached, as is the SwiftGrip securing device. With all the components preassembled in one package, it's just a matter of opening the bag, dropping the tube and getting on with patient care.

     For more: www.swiftgrip.com; 800/370-8727.

LBS Jr. from Ferno

     Hardly a week goes by that you don't read an article or hear a report about Americans getting larger. Whether it's our poor dietary choices, sedentary lifestyle or aversion to hitting the gym, our collective girth is increasing. EMS providers should take particular note of this, since we are the ones who carry these folks up and down stairs.

     While the EMS industry has begun to respond with the development of bariatric ambulances and other equipment designed for our larger patients, the fact remains that there aren't that many of these specialty rigs to be found just yet. With the advent of the LBS Jr. from Ferno, your service now has the ability to convert a Ferno Ambulance Cot (Models 35X, 93H or POWERFlexx) on-scene into a bariatric cot.

     The LBS Jr. quickly secures to the cot with the LBS Bariatric Board attachment, immediately expanding the surface area for the patient. It comes with the Manta Transfer Sheet, which features eight handholds for moving patients up to 800 lbs. The LBS Jr. also has a specialty mattress for added patient comfort; this folds away for easy storage. Its folding "wings" reduce the width of the surface platform from 42" to 29" for better maneuvering in hallways, stairwells and other tight places.

     This is a truly innovative product that will allow you to handle bariatric patients more comfortably and safely.

     For more: www.ferno.com; 877/733-0911.

MCA Series Multiple Oxygen Flow Meter Chain Assembly from Flotec, Inc.

     Until Oklahoma City and 9/11, you rarely heard the word "scalability" in discussions about EMS operations. We now face the reality that terrorism has come to our homeland. With that unfortunate fact comes the realization that even a moderate-size municipal service that runs 50 or 100 calls a day can, in the blink of an eye, be looking at thousands of patients.

     The challenges of having true scalability from a preparation standpoint are daunting. For example, it isn't fiscally feasible to have 3,000 backboards in storage "just in case." Besides, they'd be in a warehouse somewhere, and how would you get them to an emergency scene in a timely fashion anyway? On the other hand, only having 10 extra backboards is clearly inadequate. Gauging those "right amounts" is where our biggest challenges lie.

     The idea of delivering oxygen to multiple patients simultaneously from a single source is not new. From manifold devices to harness-style devices, the scalability of oxygen delivery has always been a problem waiting for a better solution. The MCA Series Multiple Oxygen Flow Meter Chain Assembly from Flotec may be that solution. The standard package comes with a 20-foot leader from your rig with five or six adjustable aluminum-alloy flow meters attached to a flexible hose at six-foot intervals, thus allowing room between patients for you to provide care. The spread can be customized up to 10 feet, depending on your requirements, and will allow you to quickly tie in to the M or H oxygen tank in your rig and run up to 10 flow meters in a strand, each able to deliver up to 15 lpm of oxygen. The flow meter attachments have 50-psi DISS 1240 check valves that allow you to use CPAP devices or other pneumatically powered demand resuscitation equipment.

     Simplicity and durability in design, affordability and scalability make the MCA Series Multiple Oxygen Flow Meter Chain Assembly worth considering as part of your mass-casualty preparations. Add the ability to easily customize the configuration to meet your department needs, and you've got a winner.

     For more: www.floteco2.com; 800/401-1723.

Bolin Chest Seal from H&H Associates

     The treatment for penetrating chest wounds has gone through some pretty strange convolutions over the years, with products such as Vaseline gauze and Saran Wrap being early choices in our field. Whatever your choice of occlusive dressing, you still had to carefully monitor the patient, as a simple pneumothorax, once sealed, could still evolve into a tension pneumothorax, thus requiring that you "burp" the dressing—i.e., pull up part of the seal to let air escape-before resealing the dressing over the wound.

     With the introduction of the Bolin Chest Seal (BCS), I believe we are looking at the state of the art for management of penetrating chest wounds. The Bolin Chest Seal is a sterile polyurethane disk covered with a thick layer of gel-based adhesive. Even when placed on a wet, bloody or hairy chest, the BCS will do its job, as evidenced by battlefield applications by the U.S. Marine Corps. The adhesive is so effective, it can actually be removed and reapplied to the trauma site, if required. With the seal's six-inch diameter, even large defects in the chest wall can be sealed in a matter of seconds. The BCS also features a patented failure-proof triple-valve design that allows air or blood to escape while preventing the reentry of any unwanted gas or liquid at the trauma site, along with eliminating the hassle of "burping" your dressing.

     The performance characteristics of the Bolin Chest Seal are impressive, and as far as I'm concerned, if it works well enough for the U.S. Marine Corps, it will work for EMS.

     For more: www.esf8-con.com; 850/982-4567.

The Adventures of Tommi Lance from ILT Publishing

     Developing a user-friendly public-education program is no small task. Homegrown programs often fall into one of two boxes: a content-laden program that is as boring as watching paint dry, or a primarily entertainment event that has no real meat and potatoes. On top of that, the time needed to research, develop and test-drive a program can really eat up your developmental hours.

     Now your agency has a viable alternative to building your own with the comprehensive, step-by-step EMS public education program from ILT Publishing. Targeted at children in kindergarten through third grade, The Adventures of Tommi Lance uses fun, lifelike child characters to deliver its message, which includes tips to reduce the risk of injury and education on what to expect if illness or injury occurs. Another key focus of this series (four books and four accompanying activity books) is on increasing the child's familiarity with the ambulance, equipment and emergency medical procedures.

     The books have fun, colorful cartoon animals that interact with Tommi and his friends. The storylines are realistic, helping make the injuries more real and understandable and the prevention tips more effective.

     With about 14 million children requiring medical attention annually, an effective illness- and injury-prevention program could have a major impact. A fun educational program presented at this age can help establish behavior patterns that will impact kids as they grow up. Letting Tommi Lance plant his seeds of "Think safe! Be safe!" could produce a significant harvest down the road.

     Included with the books are other fun things like bookmarks, certificates and badges, as well as an interactive website so kids can follow up and see how the characters in the story turn out. Tommi Lance will engage, educate and entertain youngsters, hopefully preventing injuries one story at a time!

     For more: www.iltpublishing.com; 610/518-6850.

Uni-Vent Model 731 Electric Mini Ventilator from Impact

     With each passing year, more specialized equipment makes its way to our prehospital doorstep. Hopefully, that translates into improved patient care.

     One company with a long history of innovative and top-quality products is Impact Instrumentation, and it maintains that tradition with its Uni-Vent Model 731 Electric Mini Ventilator, the first self-contained portable ventilator with integrated pulse oximetry specifically designed for transport, military and mass-casualty care.

     When the 731 powered up, I immediately noticed the easy readability of the LCD. Even when it was bathed in the fluorescent glow of the exhibit hall, I had no problem reading the screen. Another notable feature is the LED array mounted on the 731's top edge, which provides a quick visual indication regarding all aspects of machine performance. The comprehensive alarm suite includes Sp02 and heart rate alarms in addition to monitoring overall operations. The LED alarm indicators are multidirectional and viewable from almost any direction, and let me tell you, when those red LEDs light up, you'd have to be in a coma to miss them. Additional alarms include context-sensitive help prompts to guide you to quick problem resolutions.

     Other features of the Uni-Vent 731 include an air-oxygen mixer and Fi02 alarms, along with automatic altitude and PEEP compensation. The volume and pressure modes include APRV and CPAP. With all these features, it's hard to believe the 731 weighs a mere 8½ lbs.

     The 731 will operate on either AC or DC power, as well as on its rechargeable lithium ion battery. In the battery mode, expect 10 hours of continuous operation.

     All in all, the Uni-Vent Model 731 Electric Mini Ventilator is a small, lightweight, feature-laden ventilator that comes from one of the most respected names in our industry.

     For more: www.impactii.com; 973/882-1212.

Protek Advanced Restraint System from Intertek Industrial Corp.

     While our rigs may be stylishly painted, lit up like Christmas trees and stocked like small emergency departments, the fact remains that our "offices" are still moving motor vehicles. Anytime someone has to work in a mobile environment, they incur some risks. Ideally, we would be totally secured throughout the care and transport of our patients, but that is simply not a reality at this time. Current rig designs and the need for providers to move around during care limit the amount to which we can be safely restrained.

     That said, when you aren't doing patient care, you need to be as secure as possible while your rig is rolling. To that end, Intertek Industrial Corp. has introduced its Protek Advanced Restraint System line.

     The Protek design uses vehicle-mounted anchors capable of dispersing loads to multiple reinforced mounting locations on the vehicle. Utilizing safety technology from the automotive industry, the Protek system uses webbing, components and retractors traditionally tested to Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards. These multipoint systems enhance safety in side-facing seating applications.

     Unlike the typical lap-belt/shoulder-harness configuration that allows a person to partially rotate out during a crash, the Protek design reduces lateral movement and minimizes upper body rotation, while still providing exceptional security for the torso. Wearers still have a reasonable range of motion, as the Protek system allows them to lean forward while remaining secure in the seat. Lastly, the Protek system provides increased stability and security in the event of a rollover.

     Given that most serious injuries and over 80% of EMS fatalities occur in the rear of ambulances involving improperly restrained or unrestrained occupants, it's time we get with the program and aggressively work to improve safety in our mobile working environment. The Protek Advanced Restraint System is a huge step in the right direction.

     For more: www.intertekindustrial.com; 800/848-1043.

Portable Simulation Environments from KB Port

     One of the most important aspects of any successful simulation is achieving a suspension of disbelief. To that end, creating as realistic a training environment as possible in which to learn and practice is a must.

     Part of that solution may come through KB Port's Portable Simulation Environments (PSEs). In minutes you can take a classroom, auditorium or parking lot and turn it into an emergency scene. KB Port offers three different street scenes, including an accident scene with a burning vehicle. You can also get a bedroom, living room or bathroom scene for homecare scenarios. Other options include an OR, birthing room, trauma room and ICU.

     All of the PSEs are available in multiple formats, including lightweight pop-up fabric backdrops, fire-resistant curtains and wallpaper. The pop-up walls come in seven- and 10-foot lengths, allowing you to combine any two to create a "corner" scene. The curtains are lightweight and washable with top grommets and weighted bottoms, expertly finished on all four sides. The fabric is also certified to be flame-retardant, meeting or exceeding the flammability standards of NFPA 701. The wallpaper versions are made of sturdy, professional-grade wall covering that is easy to handle, hang and maintain.

     In my experience, there is no question that the more realistic the simulation, the more learning opportunities there are to be had. The quality and resolution of the graphics on the KB Port PSEs are excellent, and with the many choices they offer, you can quickly create a more realistic atmosphere in which to train students and emergency response teams efficiently and effectively.

     For more: www.kbport.com; 412/487-4663.

English-Spanish Medical Visual Language Translator from Kwikpoint

     Year after year, the diversity of our country increases, with the Spanish-speaking population showing the largest growth. With that comes an increased likelihood that you will encounter more and more Spanish-speaking patients. For most EMS providers, English is not their primary language, it's their only language. Knowing words like fajita, burrito or cerveza may get you lunch and a beer, but you are no closer to communicating effectively with your Spanish-speaking patients than you are with the man in the moon.

     That can quickly change if you have the English-Spanish Medical Visual Language Translator from Kwikpoint. Using an innovative collection of images arranged in an order that parallels the standard EMS assessment model, you can initiate the acquisition of basic clinical information by pointing at the pictures, which also include helpful Spanish phrases and questions. Collectively they facilitate a dialogue and information exchange where language barriers might otherwise hinder proper care. The device features a heavy plastic laminate that makes it field-friendly even in inclement weather. It folds up neatly so you can keep it in your pocket for instant access.

     The "point to the picture" visual language technology used by Kwikpoint has been used for years by the U.S. military, recently in Afghanistan and Iraq. It took me a few minutes to get used to the layout and basic functionality, but after a brief explanation and demonstration, I had the basics down and felt I could effectively use the tool. Clearly, the more you use the English-Spanish Medical Visual Language Translator, the more efficient you become. It is well thought out and inexpensive, with field-tough design.

     Don't get caught with vapor lock of the mouth the next time you encounter a Spanish-speaking patient. With the English-Spanish Medical Visual Language Translator in your pocket, the solution is at your fingertips.

     For more: www.kwikpoint.com; 888/KWIK-POINT.

MyRapidMD ESP 2.0 from MyRapidMD

     When the unexpected occurs, EMS is called into action, responding to a variety of medical and trauma events. Once on scene, patient care decisions are driven, for the most part, by information obtained at the scene. In cases where the patient cannot provide a history, you are left without your primary source of information. However, if that patient subscribes to MyRapidMD ESP 2.0, you have access to your patient's information, regardless of their condition.

     MyRapidMD ESP 2.0 is a proprietary software application, designed specifically for cell phones that are Web-enabled/Java-capable, that allows a subscriber to establish their Emergency Service Profile. ESP was designed in concert with firefighters, paramedics and ED nurses using the SAMPLE model as its basic information platform. The ESP software package instantly turns a cell phone into an emergency information repository, holding up to 16 fields of valuable information.

     People who have ESP-enabled cell phones have ID wallet cards, key ring cards and fluorescent, weatherproof ESP stickers on the backs of their cell phones. All an EMS provider has to do to access the patient's medical profile is go to either the Applications or Games & Applications folder on the phone and select the ESP icon.

     In the world of prehospital medicine, it is always better to have more information than less. With almost 250 million cell phones in the U.S., MyRapidMD ESP 2.0 could turn them all into sources of patient history for ready access by EMS providers. The possibilities are intriguing, to say the least.

     For more: www.myrapidmd.com; 877/943-8676.

Controlled Access Pharmacy from National Vending

     It seems like the volume of medications in our drug boxes just keeps increasing as the scope of prehospital care keeps evolving. With those increases come multiple problems. Having an accurate inventory and making certain your perishable items are used in a first-in, first-out manner is a key part of being fiscally responsible. Of course, the security issues involved with controlled substances are important as well. These and other problems can be solved with the Controlled Access Pharmacy (CAP) from National Vending.

     First and foremost, the CAP gives EMS professionals the ability to quickly restock their units 24/7. Multiple levels and forms of identification verification provide exceptional security. Authorized professionals can use any single or multiple combinations of identification methods, including PIN, bar code ID scanner, proximity card reader, biometric (fingerprint) reader or camera. The CAP features six large flex-trays with adjustable heights (one-inch increments) to accommodate multiple package sizes. The window over the products is large and well lighted for convenience and ease of use.

     The data management system utilized with the Controlled Access Pharmacy is both comprehensive and impressive. Dispensing data is immediately available online and quickly accessible through a secure log-in. Inventory status, usage reports, product use trends, restocking lists and many other management reports can be quickly generated and printed. Another option is exporting the data to your desktop for import into your billing/tracking or accounts payable/receivable software.

     The CAP software provides a great safety net, as it will send an alert to key personnel via e-mail, pager or cell phone to warn of low stock, products due to expire, loss of power, etc. Another plus is that the CAP can be configured to control the temperature in a given zone to maintain constant levels for products needing that type of storage.

     The Controlled Access Pharmacy is a logical and simple solution to multiple EMS challenges, as it uses the latest inventory and tracking technology to provide instant recording, reporting and tracking of EMS supplies while allowing immediate access 24/7 for EMS providers to get their rigs back in service without unnecessary delays.

     For more: www.ucapit.com; 888/795-8363.

MOV Power Chair from Paramed

     Just thinking about the days of using lift-and-load-from-the-ground gurneys still makes my lumbar spine groan. For all those 20-year-plus EMS veterans still out there, you know, like I know, just how much luck is involved in getting in and out of EMS with your back intact. Even when using excellent body mechanics, every patient move-whether it be carrying a patient down stairs or moving them from the front seat to the long board or from a squad car to the ambulance-involves an opportunity to trash your back and end your career. So it's only logical that anytime we can replace manual activities that would normally stress our backs with mechanical devices, we should make the change. As I see it, it's a no-brainer.

     Say hello to the state of the art in patient movement when stairs are involved: the MOV Power Chair from Paramed. The MOV Power Chair is a low-slung tread-driven device that allows the EMS team to easily take a patient up or down stairs with virtually no physical effort, other than getting them into and out of the Power Chair itself. That is made simple by the chair's infinite positioning system. Another plus: The seats themselves are disposable to reduce infection exposure and cleanup time.

     Of course I couldn't wait to see how the MOV Power Chair would handle my 285-pound frame, so into the seat I went. Just for sport, I had Paramed's reps at the show take me up and down the stairs several times. Saying I was impressed would be an understatement. With each trip up and down the flight of six stairs, the MOV Power Chair started and stopped without hesitation. The actual movement was smooth and seamless, and I felt no jerks or jumps.

     The MOV Power Chair is powered by a rechargeable lead acid battery that will last for about 30 flights on a single charge. About two hours of charging will bring a dead battery back to full capacity.

     Stairs just got a whole lot easier thanks to the MOV Power Chair. Check one out today; your back will thank you.

     For more: www.paramedsystems.com; 877/633-1080.

DriPADs from Quellent Technologies

     Out there in EMS land, we are exposed to way too many liquids. While the rain may soak us through and make calls slow and sloppy, that's not one of the liquids we should fret too much about. It's those body fluids wherein the real risk lies.

     No matter how careful a practitioner you are, at some point you are going to make a mess. Whether it's that extra two seconds to plug in the IV line that results in a small puddle of blood on the floor or your inability to catch and hold 750 cubic centimeters of vomit in that little green plastic boat that holds 500 at best, having a way to quickly and efficiently deal with these moments is a must.

     From my perspective, Quellent's DriPADs are pretty much unbelievable when it comes to the area of absorbency. Even the smallest DriPAD, 9 x 9 inches, can soak up 500 ccs of liquid in seconds and solidify it into a gel within half a minute. Once the liquid is trapped as gel, the DriPAD doesn't leak or drip as you fold it up and toss it in the red bag. There are five other sizes of DriPADs, all the way up to a 23 x 60 big boy that would easily pick up several gallons of liquid.

     DriPADs also make excellent barrier pads. The purple, low-skid backing can be used barrier-side-up for a kneepad or as a drop cloth. In addition, DriPADs contain a broad-spectrum antimicrobial agent to control bacteria and odors. The DriPAD works fast to absorb liquids at their source, before they drip on equipment or run along the floor, saving cleanup time and allowing you to get your rig back in service quickly.

     For more: www.quellent.com; 760/431-9620.

Emergency Medical Restraint from SafeScene, Inc.

     Stroke is a dangerous and often deadly event, and one encountered frequently in the field by EMS providers. These scenes are often challenging, if for no other reason than trying to deal with a patient who suddenly can't speak or has lost the use of one side of their body. Frustrated and scared family members and friends only complicate the call.

     Another challenge surfaces when you begin to package the patient for transport. With stroke victims' often-flaccid upper extremities, you have to be careful lest an arm or hand pop out into a doorway, furniture or the spindles on a staircase.

     Securing your patient's upper extremities is a snap if you use the Emergency Medical Restraint from SafeScene. It's a patented one-size-fits-all device constructed from polypropylene webbing and a Velcro fastening system that provides quick and easy application for field use. Simply fasten the wrist straps using the hook and loop fastening materials, then secure the long tension strap. As you gently apply tension to the strap, the upper extremities are drawn into a midline position, well away from the edge of the gurney.

     Not only do you help protect the patient from injury during movement, you can also prevent them from inadvertently pulling out their IV line or the ET tube you worked so diligently to place. While the most obvious application is for the stroke patient, other possible uses would be for any unconscious/unresponsive patient (e.g., cardiac arrests, overdoses, etc.). The Emergency Medical Restraint's simple, functional design, ease of application and low cost make it a great tool worth having on your rig. Don't wait until someone gets injured and you have an attorney knocking on your door to check out this innovative device.

     For more: www.emergencymedicalrestraint.com; 800/951-1728.

SafeGuard Transport from SafeGuard

     The safe transport of children has seen a hodgepoge of approaches, from using an adult cot and padding it with blankets to trying to retrofit child seats designed for automobile use. Thankfully, those jury-rigging days may be coming to a close.

     New from SafeGuard comes the first cot-mounted restraint system for transporting children, the SafeGuard Transport. Prior to this product hitting the market, there was no restraining device for children greater than 40 pounds. The SafeGuard Transport will work on children from 22-100 pounds!

     The SafeGuard Transport fastens to your cot in about 60 seconds using color-coded webbing with snap hooks. Once in place, its design allows it to move in sync with the backrest on the cot, giving you multiple positioning options. One simple operation tightens the harness and adjusts the height, securing the child in seconds into a five-point restraint. The device features a seamless foam pad of self-skinned Neoprene that is impervious to body fluids and easy to clean. The belts are easily replaceable, should the need arise.

     Developed in collaboration with the Riley Hospital for Children in Indianapolis, the SafeGuard Transport has extensive crash-test data to support its effectiveness. It's lightweight and folds flat for easy storage, allowing easy integration into EMS operations while at the same time stowing efficiently in the too-often limited storage areas on your rig. Step up to the plate and provide safe, dependable transportation for your smaller customers.

     For more: www.safeguardseat.com; 800/586-7839.

CELOX-A from SAM Medical Products

     Quickly controlling life-threatening bleeding can range from challenging to almost impossible, especially with deep wounds or arterial involvement. More than I care to recall, I've worked some incredible traumas where we just kept piling on the 4 x 4s, and they just kept soaking up blood. In some cases, I'm talking a three- or four-inch pile of 4 x 4s! Even with direct pressure, we usually could not get an arterial bleed to actually stop.

     The daunting task of bleeding control just got much simpler with the introduction of CELOX-A from SAM Medical Products. CELOX-A is a high-performance hemostatic material designed to control even high-volume arterial bleeding. Using proprietary marine biopolymers, CELOX-A is a granular product that rapidly controls bleeding without the heat-generating characteristics of other bleeding-control products. CELOX-A comes in lightweight sealed packets you can open in seconds. Pour it into the wound, cover it with a dressing and hold it in place for five minutes. After that, you can apply a compression bandage over the dressing and get on with other business.

     Because CELOX-A works outside the normal clotting cascade of the body, it is effective even on heparinized blood. With whole blood, clotting occurs in 30.5 seconds. With heparinized blood, it takes 48. Even blood at 68ºF clots in 25.5 seconds. In a trial involving six patients with severed femoral arteries, 100% survived thanks to CELOX-A.

     CELOX-A is available in single-dose packaging that requires no special storage. Given its outstanding performance characteristics, you can't ask for a better product for the control of anything from minor bleeds to devastating arterial squirters.

     For more: www.sammedical.com; 800/818-4726.

Cardio2Go from Thomas EMS

     Let's say you're working a tough extrication, and all of sudden a colleague says they feel weak. Imagine having a hand-held ECG unit, slightly longer and thinner than a deck of cards, that has "dry-thumb" technology, eliminating the need to place gel electrodes or connect a patient cable. Imagine you could have the patient's initial ECG on the screen within seconds, and within half a minute the software would provide you with their heart rate, QRS duration and ST elevation or depression.

     Now quit imagining, because all that is currently available with the Cardio2Go from Thomas EMS. Using patented software and receptors, the Cardio2Go reads a lead 1 tracing, providing you with all the data previously described. The data is downloadable using a standard USB cable, and you can archive up to 100 events, storing them as PDFs. You also have the option of printing hard copies of ECGs, as well as e-mailing them to physicians for additional review and analysis. Optional software will also analyze the PR and QT intervals.

     The Cardio2Go is powered by two AA batteries and weighs less than six ounces. It comes with a padded Velcro cover, a close-to-indestructible Pelican carrying case, and a one-year manufacturer's warranty. Add to that the incredible performance of the Cardio2Go, and you have the whole deal in obtaining valuable cardiac information quickly and simply.

     For more: www.thomasems.com; 800/505-6503.

Danmeter Cerebral State Monitor from Tri-Anim

     A recent television show detailed the nightmare of patients waking up in the middle of surgical procedures. They were fully aware and could feel pain, but because they were chemically paralyzed, they could not move or in any way communicate what was going on.

     We can write that nightmare out of the equation by simply using the Danmeter Cerebral State Monitor from Tri-Anim. Roughly the size of a cell phone and about half as thick, the Danmeter is a medical marvel. Introduced to the hospital market in 2005, it is available for the field setting as well. This is a noninvasive medical device, for patients age 2 and up, that monitors the patient's level of consciousness through the acquisition of data from the electroencephalogram of the chemically sedated or anesthetized patient. Users have the option of wireless digital output up to approximately 32 feet.

     Powered by a rechargeable 9-volt NiMH battery, the Danmeter provides a whopping 32 hours of performance. Simply place the three sensors on the patient's head, and you have an instant visual and numerical quantification of their level of consciousness. There is no guesswork here. If the sedatives/paralytics you've given start to wear off, you immediately see the rise in brain activity long before the patient regains consciousness. Then you can prevent that nasty scenario described above.

     If you work for a service that does conscious sedation and/or rapid sequence induction intubations, I consider the Danmeter Cerebral State Monitor an absolute must. Put yourself in these patients' shoes, and I'm sure you will agree: We need to do everything we can to avoid having such accidental awakenings occur in the field setting.

     For more: www.tri-anim.com; 800/TRI-ANIM (874-2646).

See-Thru CPR from ZOLL Medical Corp.

     After living through I-don't-know-how-many ACLS updates and revisions over the last 35 years, I find it fascinating that a major focus area these days is the provision of CPR. The oft-quoted number that CPR only produces about 30% or so of what the body does (with poor CPR producing far less) serves as a reminder of why we need to do quality CPR continuously. To that end, any technology or technique that can help us provide the most effective CPR during field resuscitation attempts should be given serious consideration.

     Thanks to the new See-Thru CPR technology from ZOLL Medical Corp., you can avoid those frequent breaks in CPR to see what your patient's underlying rhythm really is. Available on the ZOLL E Series Cardiac Monitor/Defibrillators, the See-Thru CPR feature uses proprietary signal-processing technology that automatically extracts CPR artifacts from the ECG so you can readily identify any rhythm changes without interrupting cardiac compressions.

     For those already using E Series Monitor/Defibrillators, they can be easily upgraded. This requires no hardware add-ons or modifications to the machine itself, just a quick software installation.

     While it remains to be seen just how much impact the See-Thru CPR feature might have in the long run, even if it only improves our CPR by 1%, it will be 1% better than we are doing it now. That's still a plus for the victims of sudden cardiac arrest, who have had abysmal survival numbers since the first attempts at resuscitation. The convenience of the See-Thru CPR feature and its potential to improve CPR performance are two strong arguments in favor of this innovative software. If you have an E Series unit, I'd recommend getting this software installed. For new buyers, it's already there.

     For more: www.zoll.com; 800/348-9011.

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