Deployed medical providers at all roles of care must be prepared to recognize and manage acute coronary syndrome (ACS). Under optimal conditions, treatment is initiated with medical therapy and may be followed by prompt coronary angiography and revascularization. Emergent percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) is not available in most deployed locations, however, and the time for such intervention is often dependent on long-range evacuation. This CPG provides guidance on best management for ACS patients in the deployed and resource-constrained environment.
PMID: 34529799 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/LH2D-LM4R Digital Object Identifier
Background: Compared with those of tourniquet application, tourniquet conversion concepts are underdeveloped. The purpose of this project was to develop tourniquet conversion concepts and generate hypotheses. Methods: One person performed 100 tests of tourniquet application and conversion. Testing varied by conversion types, materials, and assessments. Conversions were from improvised or Combat Application Tourniquets (C-A-T) to another C-A-T, a new site (with initial C-A-T only), a pneumatic Emergency and Military Tourniquet (EMT), or a pressure dressing (compression bandage or a roll gauze and an elastic wrap). Simulated limbs were created using plastic bottle-based manikins, pool noodle-based manikins, plastic pipes, glass bottles, a rain downspout, and a cardboard poster tube. Results: Tourniquet application, conversion, and total times averaged 105, 132, and 237 seconds, respectively. Improvised tourniquet time was longer than that of C-A-T (p ≤ .05, all three). By initial tourniquet site, the 2-3 inches site had longer conversion and total time (p ≤ .02, both) compared with highest site. By whether initial tourniquets placed were also used in conversion, total time was shorter if yes (p = .05). Conversion to a pressure dressing was longer in conversion and total time (p ≤ .02, both) compared with conversion to a tourniquet. One wrap was short; we switched to those longer to cover limbs better. Limb types varied for indentation. Conversion communications improved when we used abbreviations and symbols. Conclusions: This preliminary project simulated tourniquet conversion to develop clinical concepts and research hypotheses to build a better basis for later research.
PMID: 34529800 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/J859-5AWQ Digital Object Identifier
Background: During strap pulling, how limb tourniquet sliding is prevented affects secured pressure achievement. Data from model setups indicated moving the Tactical Ratcheting Medical Tourniquet (Tac RMT; m2 inc.) holding loop location could be advantageous regarding strap-pulling pressure achievement. Methods: Self- and buddy-strap pull applications to the arm and mid-thigh were done with the commercially available Tac RMT with the holding loop adjacent to the strap redirect buckle (NEAR) and with a modified Tac RMT with the holding loop moved to the far end of the toothed ladder from the redirect (FAR). Arm applications had the strap redirect buckle on the lateral aspect of the arm. Thigh applications had the strap redirect buckle on the lateral aspect and included applications with the strap's free end pulled downward and applications with the strap free end pulled upward. Buddy- arm and thigh pull-upward applications with FAR allowed a nonstandard technique of including thumb assistance of the strap into the redirect. Results: With standard technique, five of six pairs had lower FAR secured pressures (median difference, 16mmHg). When thumb assistance was used, four of five NEAR-FAR pairs had higher FAR secured pressures (median difference, 40mmHg). The thumb strap feeding technique was neither simple nor obvious. Conclusions: Moving the holding loop location is unlikely to be advantageous for Tac RMT actual applications. Model setup findings need to be checked with applications by humans to humans.
PMID: 34529801 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/VNT3-19OA Digital Object Identifier
Background: Resuscitative endovascular balloon occlusion of the aorta (REBOA) is a technique that uses internal clamping of the aorta to control abdominal, pelvic, or junctional bleeding. We created a course to train military physicians in both civilian prehospital use and battlefield use. To determine the effectiveness of this training, we conducted REBOA training for French military emergency physicians. Methods: We trained 15 military physicians, organizing the training as follows: a half-day of theoretical training, a half-day of training on mannequins, a half-day on human corpses, and a half-day on a living pig. The primary endpoint was the success rate after training. We defined success as the balloon being inflated in zone 1 of a PryTime mannequin. The secondary endpoints were the progression of each trainee during the training, the difference between the median completion duration before and after training, the median post-training duration, and the median duration for the placement of the sheath introducer before and after training. Results: Fourteen of the physicians (93%) correctly placed the balloon in the mannequin at the end of the training period. During the training, the success rate increased from 73% to 93% (p = .33). The median time for REBOA after training was only 222 seconds (interquartile range [IQR] 194-278), significantly faster than before training (330 seconds, IQR 260-360.5; p = .0033). We also found significantly faster sheath introducer placement (148 seconds, IQR 126-203 versus 145 seconds, IQR 115.5 - 192.5; p = .426). Conclusion: The training can be performed successfully and paves the way for the use of REBOA by emergency physicians in austere conditions.
PMID: 34529802 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/NYAW-F69L Digital Object Identifier
Tasks performed by search and rescue (SAR) teams can be physically demanding. SAR organizations are faced with mounting challenges due to increased participation in recreation in remote locations and more frequent extreme weather. We sought to describe the physiological response and the methods for data collection during helicopter emergency medical service (HEMS) winch rescue from remote wilderness in extreme heat. A flight paramedic sustained 81% of maximum heart rate (VO₂ ~44.8 mL/kg/min) for ~10 minutes at a rate of perceived exertion of 19/20, and a relative heart rate of 77.5% in 37.1°C. Maximal acceptable work time for this task was calculated at 37.7 minutes. Our data collection methods were feasible, and the data captured demonstrated the level of physiological strain that may be encountered during HEMS SAR operations in austere environments and hot climate. It is essential that SAR teams that perform physically demanding tasks use a scientific approach to adapt and evolve. This is necessary to ensure personnel are appropriately selected, trained, and equipped to respond in an era of increasing demand and extreme environments.
PMID: 34529803 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/U2QG-2FVD Digital Object Identifier
The use of a nasopharyngeal airway (NPA) as an adjunct airway device can be critically important in emergency medicine. When placed correctly, the device can prevent upper airway obstruction. The goal of our review was to learn whether there is scientific evidence about the correct length and the insertion depth, and also possible facial landmarks, that can predict the appropriate length of the NPA. There has been no real consensus on how to measure the appropriate tube length for the NPA. Several studies have been able to demonstrate correlations between facial landmarks and body dimensions; however, we did not find any scientific evidence on this matter. The reviewed studies do not indicate evidence to support current recommended guidelines. This could potentially lead to both military and civilian emergency training programs not having the most accurate scientific information for training on anatomic structures and also not having a better overall understanding of intraoral dimensions. Emergency personnel should be taught validated scientific knowledge of NPAs so as to quickly determine the correct tube length and how to use anatomic correlations. This might require further studies on the correlations and perhaps radiographic measurements. A further approach includes adjusting the tube to its correct length according to the sufficient assessment and management of the airway problem.
PMID: 34529804 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/GGFN-XJEG Digital Object Identifier
Background: Terrorist attacks are growing in frequency, increasing concerns about chemical warfare agents (CWAs). Asphyxiants (e.g., cyanide), opioids (e.g., carfentanyl), and nerve agents (e.g., ricin) represent some of the most lethal CWAs. Our aim was to define the epidemiology of CWA use in terrorism and detail specific agents used to allow for the development of training programs for responders. Methods: The open-source Global Terrorism Database (GTD) was searched for all chemical attacks from January 1, 1970, to December 31, 2018. Attacks were included when they fulfilled the terrorism-related criteria as set forth in the internal Codebook of the GTD. Events meeting only partial criteria were excluded. Results: A total of 347 terrorism-related chemical events occurred, with 921 fatalities and 13,361 nonfatal injuries (NFIs) recorded during the study period. South Asia accounted for nearly 30% (101 of 347) of CWA attacks, with 73 of 101 occurring in Afghanistan. The Taliban was implicated in 40 of 101 events utilizing a mixture of agents, including unknown chemical gases (likely representing trials of a number of different chemicals), contamination of water sources with pesticides, and the use of corrosive acid. The largest death toll from a single event (200 fatalities) was attributed to a cult-related mass murder in the Kasese District of Uganda in March 2000. East Asia sustained the highest NFI toll of 7,007 as a result of chemical attacks; 5,500 were attributed to the Tokyo subway sarin gas attack of 1995 by Aum Shinrikyo. Conclusion: The use of CWAs remains a concern given the rising rate of terrorist events. First responders and healthcare workers should be aware of potential chemical hazards that have been used regionally and globally and should train and prepare to respond appropriately.
PMID: 34529805 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/UU8Q-EDYQ Digital Object Identifier
Background: Special Operation Forces (SOF) operate regularly in extreme environmental conditions that may affect tactical and physical performance. The main aims of the present study were to elucidate the impact of a long cold-water swim on SOF recruits' dexterity, performance, and reaction time. Material and Methods: Eleven recruits from Norwegian Naval Special Operation Command (NORNAVSOC) that were participating in a 10,000-m open water swim with a dry suit in 5°C cold water volunteered to participate in this study. The exercise was part of their training. Grip strength, lower body power, and dexterity were measured before, immediately after, and 24 hours after the swim. In addition, core and skin temperatures were measured continuously during the swim and until 45 minutes after the swim. Results: After the swim, moderate to large reductions in core temperature, lower body power, and reaction time were observed. Moreover, very large to extremely large reductions in skin temperature, grip strength, and dexterity were also observed. Conclusion: These results demonstrate that exposure to a 10,000-m swim in 5°C water using standard equipment led to a significant drop in the recruits' temperature and performance. These findings could have a meaningful impact on the planning of training, operations, and gear used for SOF.
PMID: 34529806 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/QE23-511P Digital Object Identifier
Objectives: Lab companies developed serology tests for antibody detection of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) with United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) emergency use authorization. Antibody detection uses purified proteins of SARS-CoV-2 to determine antibody binding via enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, chemiluminescent immunoassay (CLIA), or colloidal gold-based immunochromatographic assay. With the advent of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), nucleic acid amplification technology (NAAT) SARS-CoV-2 testing for active infection was not widely available to healthy, active-duty Soldiers. The purpose of this surveillance survey was to determine the prevalence of prior SARS-CoV-2 infection and symptoms of COVID-19 within a mechanized infantry brigade. Materials and Methods: Active-duty military Servicemembers (= 18 years) from a mechanized infantry brigade provided serum samples for testing for the Elecsys® Anti-SARS-CoV-2 qualitative antibody test from June to September 2020 at Joint Base Lewis McChord (JBLM). In addition, participants filled out a questionnaire for symptoms and exposure to COVID-19 from January to September 2020. The surveillance team collected and analyzed antibody testing results and questionnaires from participants for antibody positivity rates and symptom prevalence. Results: A total of 264 participants were tested, with one (0.4%) participant testing positive for the SARS-CoV-2 antibody. On the questionnaire, 144 of 264 (54.5%) endorsed symptoms of COVID-19 from January to September 2020. The most common symptoms were headache (35%), rhinorrhea (34%), cough (35%), and sore throat (31%). A total of 31 respondents (12%) had been quarantined as a trace contact to a COVID-19 positive patient. Conclusions: While there are limitations inherent to SARS-CoV-2 antibody testing and the survey, prevalence of prior SARS-CoV-2 infection is low. In this sample, symptoms for COVID-19 were prevalent with significant days of duty lost. Prevalence of prior SARS-CoV-2 infection in this sample may be generalizable to the larger brigade. Prevalence of symptoms of possible COVID-19 are not generalizable to the larger brigade. There is utility to further studies of SARS-CoV-2 antibody prevalence in military populations for purposes of vaccination triaging and deployment readiness.
PMID: 34529807 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/FES1-3YV5 Digital Object Identifier
Background: United States Africa Command (US AFRICOM) is one of six US Defense Department's geographic combatant commands and is responsible to the Secretary of Defense for military relations with African nations, the African Union, and African regional security organizations. A full-spectrum combatant command, US AFRICOM is responsible for all US Department of Defense operations, exercises, and security cooperation on the African continent, its island nations, and surrounding waters. We seek to characterize blood product administration within AFRICOM using the in-transit visibility tracking tool known as TRAC2ES (TRANSCOM Regulating and Command & Control Evacuation System). Methods: We performed a retrospective review of TRAC2ES medical evacuations from the AFRICOM theater of operations conducted between 1 January 2008 and 31 December 2018. Results: During this time, there were 963 cases recorded in TRAC2ES originating within AFRICOM, of which 10 (1%) cases received blood products. All patients were males. One was a Department of State employee, one was a military working dog, and the remainder were military personnel. Of the ten humans, seven were the result of trauma, most by way of gunshot wound, and three were due to medical causes. Among human subjects receiving blood products for traumatic injuries, a total of 5 units of type O negative whole blood, 29 units of packed red blood cells (pRBCs), and 9 units of fresh frozen plasma (FFP) were transfused. No subjects underwent massive transfusion of blood products, and only one subject received pRBCs and FFP in 1:1 fashion. All subjects survived until evacuation. Conclusions: Within the TRAC2ES database, blood product administration within AFRICOM was infrequent, with some cases highlighting lack of access to adequate blood products. Furthermore, the limitations within this database highlight the need for systems designed to capture medical care performance improvement, as this database is not designed to support such analyses. A mandate for performance improvement within AFRICOM that is similar to that of the US Central Command would be beneficial if major improvements are to occur.
PMID: 34529808 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/4SI5-9IRH Digital Object Identifier
Purpose: This study evaluated the musculoskeletal injury (MSKI) self-reporting behaviors among active-duty Air Force Special Warfare personnel to explore potential limitations of injury surveillance approaches. Methods: Participants completed a 47-item survey between December 2018 and March 2019 regarding their MSKI history. Participants were asked if they sought medical care for symptoms consistent with MSKIs and reasons they did or did not report their injuries. Injury reporting rates were calculated with descriptive statistics and rank ordering was utilized to determine frequency. Results: A total of 398 airmen reported 1,057 injuries occurring in the previous 12-month period, including 508 (48%) injuries identified as not reported to medical personnel. Approximately 55% (N = 579) of all injuries were described as gradual onset. The most common reason for not reporting injuries (28.8%, N = 62) was "fear of potential impact on future career opportunities." Conclusion: Approximately half of MSKIs in this sample of US Air Force Special Warfare personnel were not reported to medical personnel. The underreporting of injuries may pose unknown levels of risk and negatively impact military readiness levels.
PMID: 34529809 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/96Y6-IKFB Digital Object Identifier
Background: Penetrating thoracic injuries account for an essential subset of battlefield and civilian injuries that result in death. Current recommendations are to use commercially available nonocclusive chest seals. We review current evidence for which chest seal(s) is likely to be the most effective in treating open pneumothoraces. Methods: A systematic review was conducted in accordance with the PRIMSA 2009 standard systematic review methodology, except where noted. The databases Pubmed, MEDLINE, CINAHL, Scopus, and gray sources were searched for all English-language, full-manuscript, experimental, quantitative studies of humans and animals concerning seal adherence or their efficacy at preventing tension pneumothoraces published between 1990 and 2020. A numerical analysis was used to provide the consensus recommendation. Results: Of 683 eligible identified articles [PubMed 528 (77.3%), Scopus 87 (12.7%), CINAHL 67 (9.8%), one (0.1%) unpublished], six (0.9%) articles were included. Synthesis of all studies' results suggests a consensus recommendation for the Hyfin Vent Chest Seal and Russell Chest Seal. These two were the most effective chest seals, as previously investigated in a quantifiable, experimental study. Conclusion: While chest seals are recommended in civilian and military prehospital medicine to improve patient survival, current evidence concerning the individual device's efficacy is limited. Further scientific, quantitative research is needed to clarify which commercially available chest seals are most effective and provide patients with penetrating chest trauma the best possible method for preventing or mitigating tension pneumothoraces.
PMID: 34529810 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/FZ33-7RLL Digital Object Identifier
Background: Military personnel supplement caffeine as a countermeasure during unavoidable sustained wakefulness. However, its utility in combat-relevant tasks is unknown. This study examined the effects of caffeinated gum on performance in a tactical combat movement simulation. Materials and Methods: Healthy men (n = 30) and women (n = 9) (age = 25.3 ± 6.8 years; mass 75.1 ± 13.1 kg) completed a marksmanship with a cognitive workload (CWL) assessment and a fire-andmove simulation (16 6-m bounds) in experimental conditions (placebo versus caffeinated gum, 4mg/kg). Susceptibility to enemy fire was modeled on bound duration during the fireand- move simulation. Results: Across both conditions, bound duration and susceptibility to enemy fire increased by 9.3% and 7.8%, respectively (p = .001). Cognitive performance decreased after the fire-and-move simulation across both conditions (p < .05). However, bound duration, susceptibility to enemy fire, marksmanship, and cognitive performance did not differ between the caffeine and placebo conditions. Conclusion: These data do not support a benefit of using caffeinated gum to improve simulated tactical combat movements.
PMID: 34529811 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/C9GO-XEUM Digital Object Identifier
Background: Virtual health (VH) may enhance mentorship to remote first responders. We evaluated the feasibility of synchronous bidirectional VH to mentor life-saving procedures performed by deployed novice providers. Methods: Video teleconferencing (VTC) was established between the USNS Mercy (T-AH 19) underway in the Pacific Ocean to Naval Medical Center San Diego using surgeon teleconsultation. The adult simulated clinical vignette included injuries following a shipboard explosion with subsequent fire. The pediatric simulated vignette included injuries that resulted from an improvised explosive device (IED) blast. Using VTC, augmented reality (AR) goggles, and airway simulation equipment, corpsmen (HMs) received visual cues to perform advanced life-saving procedures. Results: In adult scenarios, 100% of novice hospital HMs performed tasks on first attempt (n = 12). Mean time for tourniquet placement was 46 seconds (standard deviation [SD], 19 seconds); needle thoracostomy, 70 seconds (SD, 67 seconds); tube thoracostomy, 313 seconds (SD, 152 seconds); and cricothyroidotomy, 274 seconds (SD, 82 seconds). In pediatric scenarios, 100% of novice HMs performed tasks on first attempt (n = 5). Mean time for tube thoracostomy completion was 532 seconds (SD, 109 seconds). Conclusion: VH can enhance the training and delivery of trauma care during prolonged field care in resource-limited settings.
PMID: 34529812 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/ATK4-KWC0 Digital Object Identifier
PMID: 34529813 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/DV8T-KQO0 Digital Object Identifier
PMID: 34529814 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/KDV5-J20N Digital Object Identifier
Anonymous A. 21(3). 100 - 106. (Classical Conference)
PMID: 34529815 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/I8J3-87F6 Digital Object Identifier
This article provides updated information comparing minimalist running shoes (MRS) to conventional running shoes (CRS). Our previous review found that, compared with running in CRS, transitioning to MRS resulted in lower energy cost and less ground contact occurring at the forefoot, resulting in lower impact forces. There was some increased risk of injury with MRS, although data were conflicting. A more recent 26-week study involved 30 trained runners using CRS and 31 using MRS. The proportion of training time in the assigned shoes increased by 5% each week. After the first 6 weeks of transition (35% of training time in the assigned shoe), energy cost was lower and 5-km running time faster in MRS compared with CRS. No further improvement occurred from weeks 6 to 26. There were no significant differences in injury incidence in the two groups (CRS = 37%, MRS = 52%; p = .24). Running-related pain was higher in the MRS group in the knee, shin, calf, and ankle and increased at these locations as running mileage increased. Risk of injury in MRS increased as participant body weight increased. These more recent data suggest that MRS can improve performance, but most runners should limit running in MRS to 35% of training time and in situations where optimal performance is desired (e.g., races, fitness tests).
PMID: 34529816 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/LWT4-DGIH Digital Object Identifier
PMID: 34529817 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/QKCJ-Z263 Digital Object Identifier
Background: The negative effects of deployment on military mental health is a topic of major interest. Predeployment and postdeployment assessments are common, but to date there has been little to no intradeployment assessment of military members. This study attempts to determine the physiological and psychiatric effects on Servicemembers over the course of deployment, to provide a baseline data set and to allow for better prediction, prevention, and intervention on these negative effects. Methods: A retrospective analysis was performed on physiological and psychiatric data collected on a single deployed medical team between 16 January 2020 and 12 July 2020. Patient health screening questionnaires (PHQ-9) and physiological measurements were completed serially twice weekly on five active-duty military volunteers for the entirety of a scheduled 6-month deployment. Results: Depression symptom development followed a linear trend (p = .0149) and severity followed a quadratic trend (p < .001) over a length of a deployment. Weight (p = .435) and pulse (p = .416) were not statistically altered. Mean arterial pressure (MAP) had a statistically significant reduction (p < .001). Conclusion: In this specific population, there was a linear relationship between time deployed and depression symptoms and severity. Depression symptom severity decreases toward the end of deployment but does not return to baseline before deployment's end.
PMID: 34529818 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/P0Q2-0FO1 Digital Object Identifier
In January 2020, an American base was attacked by the largest theater ballistic missile strike in history. This case report covers the resulting mass casualty (MASCAL) incident. In this case, we defined this incident as a MASCAL due to a lack of medical personnel available to properly and timely evaluate the patients. There was no loss of life during the attack but there were > 80 traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). This article focuses on lessons learned from diagnosing and treating Soldiers during a TBI MASCAL event.
PMID: 34529819 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/MAZS-N4FP Digital Object Identifier
Venezuela is living in a delicate social and political crisis that has taken thousands of lives. Beginning in March 2017, a series of continuous and increasingly violent demonstrations has taken place, with a high number of civilian casualties. These demonstrations typically have been outside the range of action of the government prehospital services. In addition, the number of casualties frequently overwhelmed the abilities of the available rescue services. Out of the need for a first aid team that could operate in this violent scenario, First Aid UCV (Central University of Venezuela) was created. A large number of professionals with medical, rescue, and tactical medicine experience integrated this new team, modifying their training and practice to adapt to a scenario in which unarmed medical students and medical doctors performed extractions, provided first aid, and managed the transport of demonstration casualties, doing so even when team members were sometimes targeted by the government police and military forces. This method has had successful results in all 60 operations conducted to date, with a total of 5,000 casualties being extracted among civilians, the military, and the police force. Only one member of the team was injured during the operations, and no deaths were reported during the process.
PMID: 34529820 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/DYV4-WR3G Digital Object Identifier
Tactical Combat Casualty Care (TCCC) has always emphasized the need to consider the tactical setting in developing a plan to care for wounded unit members while still on the battlefield. The TCCC Guidelines provide an evidence-based trauma care approach to specific injuries that may occur in combat. However, they do not address what modifications might need to be made to the basic TCCC guidelines due to the specific tactical setting in which the scenario occurs. The scenario presented below depicts a combat swimmer operation in which a unit member is shot while in the water. The unit casualty response plan for a combat swimmer who sustains a gunshot wound to the chest while on a mission is complicated by the inability to perform indicated medical interventions for the casualty while he is in the water. It is also complicated by the potential for ballistic damage to his underwater breathing apparatus and the need to remain submerged after wounding for at least for a period of time to avoid further hostile fire. Additionally, there is a potential for a cerebral arterial gas embolism (CAGE) and/or a tension pneumothorax to develop while surfacing because of the decreasing ambient pressure on ascent. The tactical response may be complicated by limited communications between the mission personnel while submerged and by the vulnerability of the mission personnel to antiswimmer measures if their presence is compromised.
PMID: 34529821 PubMed Citation
DOI: 10.55460/5A31-WYTH Digital Object Identifier