Special Constable or paramedic sir?

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Special Constable or paramedic sir?

Posted on: May 9th, 2017 by Isobel Addison No Comments

Would you be happy if a Special Constable arrived rather than a paramedic?

A pilot scheme has been launched in Hampshire which will see six Special Constables serving as First Responders for the Ambulance Service.

The Specials who have been trained by paramedics will be deployed to carry out initial lifesaving treatment at medical emergencies where an ambulance may not be able to attend in time.

Sooner rather than later

The training provided by Southern Central Ambulance Service (SCAS) provided the Specials with basic lifesaving skills including the use of oxygen and a defibrillator in cases of cardiac arrest. The idea is that the Specials could be the closest medically trained person to an incident which would mean a response in minutes which might save lives in cases such as cardiac arrest.

Clearly where time is of the essence it is better to have someone on scene who can provide treatment until the ambulance services can reach the scene.  We would however be concerned that decisions on the need for an ambulance attending at all, when the service is overstretched, might be left to the first attender.

Liability

The Special Constables will be classified as First Responders when deployed by the ambulance service to avoid the potential of an IPCC investigation in the event of a death which would typically be investigated as a death following police contact.

The pilot scheme raises questions as to whether it is papering over the cracks of a broken ambulance service when police officers are struggling to respond to their own 999 calls.

Retained fire fighters

PCSOs are already used as retained firefighters in Devon. The voluntary role is part of a two-year pilot scheme by Devon and Cornwall Police and Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service

This pioneering initiative joining up the emergency services will combine the roles of PCSOs and retained firefighters.  The scheme will see PCSOs trained up as retained firefighters so that they can carry pagers and respond to fire calls when they are on duty as PCSOs.

The cover provided by the officers is particularly valuable during weekdays when the fire service struggle to cover retained stations when most of their responders are committed n their normal day jobs.

It is hoped that the officers will be able to provide a better more joined up service where officers visiting premises or engaging with community groups can not only deliver crime related advice but also fire safety advice that will protect people from harm.

It has been suggested that PCSOs are taking the strain for overworked social services, mental health services, children’s homes and hospitals, fire service and now the ambulance service.

 

We would love to know how you feel about the pilot scheme and whether it is positive thing to have more First Responders or a situation where follow up training and driver response training will not be provided and will result in a recipe for disaster.

 

 

The mystery of chronic pain

Posted on: May 19th, 2016 by Isobel Addison No Comments

The mystery of chronic pain

Why do some people develop chronic pain following an injury while others do not?

The question has remained a mystery to both doctors and scientists.

Chronic pain affects millions of people.  People who suffer from severe, chronic pain know only too well how it can utterly disrupt and damage day-to-day life. Pain can make it a challenge to get through each day let alone to enjoy even the simplest daily activities.

Chronic pain has historically been misunderstood. The medical profession used to believe that pain could only be a manifestation of an underlying injury or disease. As such, doctors focused on treating the underlying cause of the pain, with the belief that once the injury or disease was cured the chronic pain would then disappear.

If no underlying cause could be found for the pain, then the patient was often told that, “the pain must be in your head”. Unfortunately, some doctors still practice in this manner, having no appreciation for the unique difficulties experienced by sufferers of chronic pain.

A new study led by researchers at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (RIC) and Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine has revealed that the risk of a patient developing  chronic pain is determined by the brains anatomical properties, and not the initial injury.

“While simple, the logic of addressing problems at the site of an injury to remove pain has resulted in only limited success,” said senior study author Marwan Baliki, PhD, research scientist at RIC and an assistant professor of physical medicine and rehabilitation at Feinberg. “The central processes of chronic pain have largely been ignored, so our research team set out to better understand the brain’s role.”

The researchers found that patients who developed chronic pain had a smaller hippocampus and amygdala compared with those who recovered. The hippocampus is the primary brain region involved in memory formation and retention, while the amygdala is involved in the processing of emotions and fear. In addition to changes in size, these regions also showed differences in connections to the rest of the brain, particularly to the frontal cortex, an area involved in judgment.

The study’s results challenge long-standing views of the science of pain, establishing that the gross anatomical properties of the brain determine the most risk for developing chronic pain.

The results pave the way for the development of a different approach for the prevention and treatment of chronic pain.

The full study, “Corticolimbic anatomical characteristics predetermine risk for chronic pain,” will be published in the June edition of Brain. In addition to Apkarian, Baliki and Vachon-Presseau, study authors include Pascal Tétreault, Bogdan Petre, Lejian Huang, Sara E. Berger, Souraya Torbey, Alexis T. Baria, Ali R.Mansour, Javeria A. Hashmi, James W. Griffith, Erika Comasco, and Thomas J. Schnitzer.

More: http://www.pharmiweb.com/PressReleases/pressrel.asp?ROW_ID=167888#.Vz2KU9L2ZMg#ixzz4961Bq7CF

Axium™ Neurostimulator

Posted on: April 12th, 2016 by Isobel Addison No Comments

St. Jude Medical Axium™ Neurostimulator Stimulator launched

On 11th April 2016 St. Jude Medical, Inc., a global medical device company, announced the U.S. launch and first post-approval implants of the St. Jude Medical Axium™ Neurostimulator System.

The treatment for patients with chronic pain involves dorsal root ganglion (DRG) stimulation. it is hoped that the treatment will help patients who have not been receptive to traditional spinal cord stimulation (SCS).

The first commercial implants of the St. Jude Medical Axium™ Neurostimulator System device have taken place at the Centre for Pain Relief in Charleston, and at the Sutter Santa Rosa Surgery and Endoscopy Centre in Santa Rosa, California.

 

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(Photo: Business Wire)

Half of the states in the USA will treat patients using the  DRG implants in the coming weeks.

St. Jude Medical has partnered with 59 implanting chronic pain specialist centres across the country. They hope to conduct more than 100 procedures in the first month.

They aim to train more than 300 physicians to effectively deliver DRG therapy to patients over the next year.

The treatment is designed for patients in immediate need of targeted stimulation to alleviate chronic pain resulting from moderate to severe chronic intractable pain of the lower limbs in adult patients with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) types I and II.

Stimulation of the DRG, a spinal structure densely populated with sensory nerves that transmit information to the brain via the spinal cord, allows physicians to treat the specific areas of the body where pain occurs. This new approach is designed exclusively to treat moderate to severe chronic intractable pain of the lower limbs in adult patients with CRPS.

Dr Pope, who has already performed the procedure says that, “Stimulation of the dorsal root ganglion is the first therapy option designed specifically for patients suffering from complex regional pain syndromes. This serious and traditionally challenging to treat chronic pain condition can occur from complications to recovery from surgeries such as knee arthroscopy, foot surgery or hernia surgery. Having a treatment option rooted in clinical evidence fundamentally changes our approach to treating patients.”

The Institute of Medicine reports that chronic pain affects more than 100 million Americans. This is more than heart disease, cancer and diabetes combined. Neuropathic pain represents one of the most prevalent yet under-treated forms of chronic pain in the United States.

Initial results evaluating patients suffering from neuropathic chronic intractable pain associated with CRPS I and II or peripheral causalgia (PC), showed DRG stimulation provided patients with superior pain relief over traditional tonic SCS.

Information for patients to learn more about chronic pain can be found at www.sjm.com/pain.

View source version on businesswire.com: http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20160411005397/en/

If you are suffering from chronic pain syndrome as a result of an accident or someone else’s negligence call our experts on 01285 654875.