Here’s a new article about the impact of stress among clinicians.
In a recent study from Toronto, researchers studied paramedics in two similar scenarios. Both scenarios involved a 50 year old patient suffering from chest pain. The patient develops pulmonary edema, hypotension and an ECG reveals a STEMI. All study participants (paramedics) performed interventions based on their established local protocols.
In the “high stress” scenario, there was an actor playing the patient’s partner who was visibly distressed and challenging the paramedic’s actions. Also, all alarms were turned up to full volume and there was constant 2-way radio communication going on in the background. None of this occurred in the “low stress” scenario.
Paramedics were assessed using a global rating scale, a checklist scale and their salivary cortisol levels were measured before and after each scenario (as a response to stress).
The authors noted that “When faced with clinically relevant stressors, paramedics demonstrated signiﬁcant increases in subjective (anxiety) and physiological
(salivary cortisol) measures…
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