Syncope Medical Emergency Proficiency

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Syncope

Most common life-threatening emergency that occurs in the dental office. Commonly referred to as fainting.

Early signs and symptoms that warn us our patient is about to faint

Patient becomes pale, is covered in a cold sweat, complains of being hot, dizzy, or nauseated

The cause of Syncope is a result of

Too little blood to the brain

Sympathetic NS

Which NS causes blood vessels in the skeletal muscles of the arms and legs to dilate

The most common cause of syncope whether psychological or physical?

Stress

What initially happens to the patient's BP and pulse who are stressed or scared?

BP and pulse increases due to the "flight or flight" stimulation of the sympathetic NS

Once a patient has fainted and becomes unconscious, what will happen to their BP, pulse, and respiration?

BP and pulse will increase, respiration will become shallow and gaspy

Signs that a patient has fainted

Patient may exhibit convulsions, dilated pupils, a deathlike appearance

The very first action you do during "all medical emergencies" in the clinic?

Call CODE BLUE for an instructor

4 things you send a classmate for during any medical emergency?

Emergency Kit, Medical emergency clipboard, AED, Oxygen

What position do you place a patient who has fainted and why?

Trendelenburg, to get oxygenated blood flowing back to the patients head

Who do you not place in a Trendelenburg position and why?

Pregnant patients, because the baby will press on there diaphragm making it difficult to breathe

What is the Trendelenburg position?

A supine position where your feet is slightly above your head or heart

How do you position a pregnant patient who has fainted?

On their left side before elevating their feet

How often do you take vitals (BP, Pulse, Respiration) on a patient during any medical emergency?

Every 5 minutes

What will you wave under a patients nose who has fainted and why?

An ammonia capsule. It stimulates muscle movement and breathing

Would you give oxygen to a patient who has fainted? Is so how much?

Yes. 5-6 L/m (liters per minute)

Where should you document "everything" that has occurred during a medical emergency?

Medical Emergency Form and the patient's Treatment record

Where should you go if your patient has a medical emergency?

No where. You should remain with your patient until the medical emergency is completely resolved.

The number one thing that you can do to prevent an emergency?

Take a good medical history

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