Chris is an EMS Education Coordinator with the National EMS Academy in Louisiana. He has been providing pre-hospital emergency care, ranging from primary EMS response to critical care transportation by land and air for over 23 years. Additionally, Chris has educated future first responders, EMT's, paramedics, nurses and doctors for over 22 years.
Chris holds Bachelor of Education degree from the University of Toledo and is currently an annual presenter at local, state, and national EMS and public safety conferences.
He is a self-proclaimed sports, rollercoaster and movie junkie and enjoys traveling as often as possible throughout the United States.
EMS Education Coordinator
Acadian Companies, Inc. National EMS Academy
South Louisiana Community College
Parents don't know that inhalants - cheap, legal and accessible products, are as popular as marijuana. Even fewer know the deadly effects the poisons in these products have on the brain and body when they are inhaled or "huffed." It's like playing Russian Roulette - the user can die the 1st, 10th or 100th time a product is misused. This presentation will explain the pathophysiology of various gases, nitrites, volatile substances and other information you need to know about this deadly underground problem affecting teens and pre-teens.
Most EMS training teaches us how to deal with the “average” patient. Due to advances in medical technology and more plentiful support services, children who have suffered critical injuries and those with unique disease states are being cared for at home more than ever. This presentation will explain the most common equipment and technology that pre-hospital providers will encounter when caring for these patients.
Luckily, most pre-hospital deliveries involve a catch, suctioning and warming the newborn. Sometimes though, Murphy’s Law gets in the way - resulting in a complicated birth. Topics including placenta previa, abruptio placenta, shoulder dystocia, CPD and breech birth are explained in this not-always-necessary-but-essential-to-know presentation.
Those who work at heights on scaffolds and other structures higher than six feet often wear safety harnesses. The technology of safety harnesses has progressed in recent years, but even with the best designs in safety gear, those who fall in an upright position are at risk of death. This can happen even after a relatively short and effective rescue. This presentation will explain the physiological consequences of suspension trauma and what EMS professionals need to consider during treatment and transport.
Need to brush up on some basic musculoskeletal assessment and management? This lecture will help get you back up to speed on caring for various injuries and the complications associated with fractures and dislocations. If nothing else, just come to see all of the cool pictures!
Ever wonder what it would be like to be struck by lightning? This presentation will enlighten you to the various effects that a lightning strike has on the human body. There are numerous associated anatomical and physiological complications that the pre-hospital provider must be aware of in order to triage and treat these victims properly. Come, listen, and see what all the thunder is about!
One of the most common calls to which an EMS provider responds is the classic “shortness of breath”. While there are many causes behind this chief complaint, this presentation focuses upon the 2 main types of COPD - emphysema and chronic bronchitis. Both disease processes' pathophysiology are compared and contrasted as well as their signs and symptoms. This presentation is audience interactive and follows an imaginary storyline of two patients named Betty and Earl that helps to solidify the differences and commonalities of these two respiratory emergencies.
What is the difference between hypokalemia and hyperkalemia? Should pre-hospital providers even care? Absolutely! Ever run a code or treat a dialysis patient, and despite everything you’re doing correctly his/her presentation doesn’t improve? Remember the H’s and T’s? Come participate…and we’ll discuss signs, symptoms, physical presentation, ECG changes and other things to consider.
One time or another, we take the call for a patient that we know all too well. Sometimes it's a family member, a friend, and in one terrible instance - a co-worker. Based on an actual EMS call, this presentation correlates real timeline history, events, and preventative treatments for a fellow colleague with the underlying pathophysiology of a pulmonary embolism. Various signs, predisposing risk factors and origins of emboli formation are all tied together to give a global perspective of the acute and, in this case, fatal event that shocked and stunned an entire EMS service.
We all have heard at one time or another “never, ever shake a baby”. Unfortunately, when it happens, EMS providers are the first to encounter what is a very traumatic and emotional situation. Pathophysiology, signs and other issues relating to this terrible event are explained in this presentation that is not for the faint of heart.
When the kidneys fail, your patient becomes sick with a variety of non-specific signs and symptoms. Whether from an acute situation or from a chronic problem, kidney failure may lead a patient being dependent on dialysis. This presentation helps you gain some insight into the challenges these patients provide to the EMS professional.
This presentation will describe the organic, psychosocial and environmental causes of mental health derangement as well as providing information on schizophrenia, phobia and depression. Specific pathophysiology, signs and symptoms and EMS treatment options are provided to the participant during the discussion as well as addressing the prevalent problem of PTSD and suicide that is affecting all of us in the EMS community, now more than ever.
Based on an actual event, this case study presentation follows the development of the pathophysiology, signs, symptoms and treatment of a severe anaphylactic reaction
Blast injuries result from explosions that have the capability to cause multisystem, life-threatening injuries in single or multiple victims simultaneously. These types of events present complex triage, diagnostic, and management challenges for the health care provider. This presentation will explain the pathophysiology, safety considerations and what we can do as EMS providers to help these trauma patients
Pediatric patients are often loaded and transported without adequate assessment or management. Furthermore, respiratory problems can present as life-threatening conditions, increasing an EMS responders’ anxiety This informative presentation will leave you with a greater understanding of the differences in pediatric airways, pathophysiology, signs and symptoms and treatment options at the BLS and ALS levels for various inflammatory and traumatic issues with a child's upper and lower airway.
When responding to an entrapment situation, EMS should be prepared to manage a patient with crush syndrome. Having your patient die moments after being freed is a tragic end to a well-executed rescue. EMS providers as part of these teams can reduce the chances of this through recognition and proper pre-treatment prior to extrication. Come listen to this presentation and find out how.
Sepsis is a systemic infection that presents a management challenge to those who care for infants and children. Caring for a septic child can sometimes cause anxiety and fear in even the most seasoned EMT or paramedic. The EMS professional must be familiar with the signs and symptoms of this possible life-threatening event, and vigilant in his or her examination. This presentation will help you to recognize and properly intervene, which is essential to improve patient outcome.
Good, bad, or indifferent, as EMS professionals, we don't get the call very often for sick and/or injured pediatric patients. When we do, all kinds of panic usually ensues due to our lack of exposure and fear of "dealing with a child". Accurate assessment of a child with an acute illness requires an organized approach. In order to make the process of assessing a child more efficient and user-friendly, the pediatric assessment triangle has been developed. It is a rapid, simple, reproducible and useful tool for children of all ages with all levels of illness or injury etiologies. Knowing the basics of this tool will help you as an EMS provider to better care for your next pediatric emergency and eliminate “THE MISFITS!”
Severe asthma is becoming more prevalent in American children, and mortality has risen sharply in the past decade. Any EMS professional may be faced with the asthmatic child in severe respiratory distress or impending respiratory failure that has not been relieved with their usual bronchodilator therapy. These scary patients need more aggressive treatment than what is usually required and this discussion will show you how to do just that at the basic and advanced levels of care.
Day 1 of trauma class – a spinal cord injury leaves a patient with a complete loss of motor function and sensation below the point of injury. But what if only PART of the spinal cord is damaged? This presentation will explain the basic pathophysiology of incomplete spinal cord injuries and their uncommon presentations that fool even the seasoned EMS professional.
More often these days, cases keep coming forth of children and young adults going into sudden, unexplained cardiac arrest. Commonly, there is an underlying non-diagnosis of what is known as “long QT syndrome” - a congenital disorder characterized by a prolongation of the QT interval on electrocardiograms. This disturbance has a propensity to produce ventricular tachyarrhythmias, which may lead to syncope or cardiac arrest/sudden death in a pediatric or young adult patient. This presentation will explain the pathophysiology, medications and genetics of long QT and how it might be the cause of your next code.
Everyone knows Larry, Moe and Curly, but what about their medical counterparts? Beck, Virchow and Cushing all became famous for their breakthrough in identifying life-threatening signs and symptoms. This presentation will review what to look for in a patient suffering from cardiac tamponade, pulmonary embolism and increasing intracranial pressure.
Sudden death due to ventricular fibrillation may occur when a projectile, such as a baseball or hockey puck strikes the chest of a child with no underlying cardiac disease. This is known as commotio cordis. Although it is a relatively rare event, quick assessment, resuscitation and defibrillation can many times produce a favorable outcome. This presentation will explain the pathophysiology and treatment of this anomaly.
The worst call possible: child in cardiac arrest. So many thoughts go through your head before you show up. On scene, chaos reigns. Why did this happen? What do I do first? The situation alone of treating a child or infant is daunting even for the most seasoned EMS professional – this presentation will help you focus and be more confident when attempting resuscitation on this patient population.
A ventricular assist device (VAD) is a device that is used to partially or completely replace the function of a failing heart. Some VAD’s are intended for short term use, typically for patients recovering from heart attacks or heart surgery, while others are intended for long-term use. These devices are becoming more and more common and EMS personnel need to know what they can and can’t do with these patients.
“Toxic alcohols” … Why would someone ever consume them? Typically, these substances are used for two reasons: suicide/homicide or inebriation Since they are more readily available than ethanol and are usually cheaper, they are sometimes the viable option for a patient looking for a quick fix. The results of ingestion, however, can be catastrophic. This presentation will break down the effects of these substances in the body and what we as EMS providers can do for these patients.
Sports-related concussions are serious, widely prevalent, and often underreported traumatic brain injuries with potential for significant long-term deleterious effects on the athlete and beyond. Since 2009, all 50 states have adopted legislation regarding concussions in sports and return to play protocols in conjunction with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s Heads Up campaign. This presentation will discuss the pathophysiology and sequelae of concussion as well as proper evaluation and management.
The diagnosis of acute ischemic stroke is often straightforward. The sudden onset of a focal neurologic deficit with a common presentation - such as hemiparesis, facial weakness and aphasia - identifies a common syndrome of acute stroke. But what if the patient presentation isn’t that cut and dry? Differential diagnostic problems remain because there are several subtypes of stroke and also because some non-vascular disorders may have clinical pictures that appear identical to strokes. This presentation will address these “mimics” as well as other considerations during your assessment of this patient who “didn’t read the textbook’.
Cardiogenic shock secondary to myocardial malfunction has serious consequences for any patient experiencing an AMI. This presentation explains the causes, pathophysiology and mechanics behind the development of cardiogenic shock as well as how to assess and treat these patients in the pre-hospital setting.
Postpartum emergencies often include headache, eclampsia, infection, heart failure, and hypertension. Failure to recognize and treat these conditions can lead to disastrous consequences for the patient, including stroke, permanent brain damage, or death. This presentation will discuss the various types of emergencies to be aware of and how to manage these patients in the pre-hospital environment.
Children and adolescents complaining of chest pain is a commonly encountered problem. Although alarming to parents, chest pain in children usually is not caused by a serious disease, unlike adults, which raises a concern for myocardial ischemia. Pediatric chest pain can be classified broadly into cardiac or non-cardiac chest pain. Non-cardiac chest pain is, by far, the most common cause of chest pain in children and adolescents. This presentation will help the EMS professional properly assess and deferentially diagnose these types of patients.
Altered mental status is hard to differentiate when examining an adult patient. When you are presented with a altered or inconsolable child, toddler, infant, or neonate – add in the pucker factor on top of all that, and it can be a stressful situation. Assessment of these smaller patients is not difficult if you have an organized approach, such as a helpful pneumonic called VITAMINS. This presentation will discuss all the components of this tool and better equip you for the next pediatric AMS call.
Victims involved with fire as a mechanism can have a multitude of injuries that cause significant morbidity and mortality. Smoke inhalation can cause systemic toxicity from carbon monoxide (CO) and/or cyanide (CN) exposure. Both toxins can cause significant injury or death if unrecognized by clinicians. The purpose of this presentation is to review the pathophysiology, diagnosis, and management of carbon monoxide and cyanide poisonings in the pre-hospital setting.
As a pre-hospital care provider, on average, you are seven times more likely to come in contact with a person on the autism spectrum. It is not one condition, but rather a broad range of conditions characterized by challenges with social skills, repetitive behaviors, speech and nonverbal communication. As a result, these patients can present EMS providers with unique assessment and management challenges. This presentation will explain the autism spectrum, the uniqueness of each part, as well as certain notable characteristics of these patients to consider when performing an assessment and rendering medical treatment.
Thousands of venomous snake bite cases are reported every year in the United States. A bite from a venomous snake is rarely deadly, but it should always be treated as a medical emergency. Most of these types of bites produce an array of symptoms, including localized pain, swelling, convulsions, nausea and even paralysis. This presentation will describe the common types of snakes, the pathophysiology of their venom and what we as EMS providers need to do for these bitten patients.
I bring years of prehospital experience, teaching and energy that entertains as well as informs!