Up Close: Trauma team response
A pager beeps, signaling to the trauma team that a patient is on the way to Hamilton General Hospital, the regional trauma centre serving Hamilton and the surrounding catchment area of 2.3 million people.
Every day at our hospital, a diverse team of trauma experts are prepared to face the most serious, life-threatening injuries. When a patient arrives to the emergency department by land or air ambulance, the team works quickly and methodically to stabilize the patient’s vital signs, to assess the severity of their injuries, and to coordinate the critical first steps of the patient’s care.
These photos, the first of a multi-part series, provide a view in to a world that most of us hope to never see.
While an emergency department nurse prepares an IV for the arriving patient, EMS provides the trauma team with the patient injury report.
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A radiology technician prepares a mobile x-ray for rapid assessment of injuries.
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Dr. Sne, Trauma Team Leader, stands at the foot of the bed guiding the team members through a systematic process of examining the patient.
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A porter prepares to the transfer patient, who is now stable, to the ICU. The trauma team will accompany the patient to the ICU for a smooth, safe transition.
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Once the patient leaves the trauma suite, the room will be cleaned, disinfected, and re-assembled to be ready for the next incoming trauma.
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The patient is intubated by anesthesia to protect their airway during resuscitation.
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Dr. Faidi reviews a chest x-ray with trauma team members.
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Ornge pilot gives the paramedics on the helicopter the “all-clear” to unload the patient.
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HHS security accompanies paramedics and the patient to ensure a safe transport from the rooftop helipad to the trauma bay.
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Patient is transported to the trauma bay.
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The Ornge helicopter leaves the Hamilton General Hospital, a level one trauma centre.
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Hospital security are present when the prevention of a potentially hostile situations is needed.
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To expose all injuries, the patient’s clothing is removed.
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A resident uses FAST (focused assessment with sonography in trauma) on the patient's abdomen to examine for possible injuries.
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A social worker speaks to the patient to assist with contacting their family.
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Keeping the patient’s body aligned, the surgical and trauma residents perform a log roll to safely examine the patient’s back for injuries and to remove the backboard used by EMS to transport the patient.
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The patient is rolled in unison by the trauma team to allow for examination of their back, assessing the full extent of their injuries. This is done regardless of visible injuries, to ensure nothing goes undetected.
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A Thomas splint is prepared for a fractured femur. This splint will temporarily stabilize the patient’s leg in preparation for the operating room. This type of splint helps to relieve tension from the muscles and results in less bleeding.
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A nurse administers pain medication while an x-ray technician prepares for diagnostic imaging.
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Documentation of the patient’s care happens from the time they arrive with EMS. This role is a key part of the trauma team, documenting the series of medical events throughout the patient's care.
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An IV is administered to deliver fluids to the patient.
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When necessary, the trauma team assembles to transfer the patient from the paramedic’s stretcher to the trauma suite stretcher.
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The trauma team consists of a multidisciplinary group of professionals. Pictured here: trauma residents, emergency department nurse, a respiratory therapist, and a paramedic.
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An emergency department resident holds the patient’s IV, preparing for transfer out of the trauma suite.
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A chest tube removes the blood from a patient’s chest (pleural cavity) that is preventing his lungs from expanding, therefore restricting oxygen intake.
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A nurse checks the output from both chest tubes and catheter. Good urine output means successful fluid intake.
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A moment of compassion is shared between the nurse and her patient while an ID bracelet is attached.
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