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Dr Matt Sztajnkrycer, MD

Director of EM Fellowship

Fellowship Program Director

Professor, Emergency

Medicine Medical director, Rochester Fire Department, Rochester Police Department, Olmsted County Sheriff’s Office

Tactical physician, Rochester Police Department, Olmsted County Sheriff’s Office Emergency Response Unit Physician, TF-MN1 Urban Search and Rescue team

Medical school: University of Connecticut School of Medicine

Ph.D.: University of Connecticut Graduate School

Residency: University of Cincinnati College of Medicine

Fellowship: University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, Toxicology and Hyperbaric Medicine

Niche: Prehospital/EMS Medicine, Disaster Medicine, Acute and Intensive Care Toxicology

Interests: Operational and high threat medicine, emergency preparedness

NAEMSP Breakfast Discussion Topic

Recent Advances in the Diagnosis and Management of Tension Pneumothorax

Rapid diagnosis and decompression of tension pneumothorax is foundational in the management of chest trauma. Military studies indicate that as many as 33% of all possibly preventable combat deaths are attributable to tension pneumothorax. Historically, decompression of tension pneumothorax involved insertion of a 14 gauge 1.75” angiocatheter in the 2nd intercostal space, mid-clavicular line. However, several studies suggested that this route and catheter size were associated with high rates of complication and failure.

The purpose of this presentation is to review recent peer-reviewed publications evaluating the need for needle decompression and the consequences of delayed management, alternative locations for needle decompression, complications associated with different anatomic approaches, and the rationale for finger thoracostomy rather than needle decompression in specific cases.  

Learner Objectives

  • Review the physiology of tension pneumothorax
  • Discuss the literature surrounding needle decompression failure and complications
  • Describe anatomic landmarks for 5th intercostal space anterior axillary line decompression
  • Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of finger thoracostomy

Save the Date

January 26th
7am - 8am

JW Marriott, Tampa, FL

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