Thursday, May 17, 2012

Fellow Students, Lend Me Your Ears - EM Oriented Podcasts

The Gist:  Podcasts are a way to absorb information in an efficient manner and the Emergency Medicine world does them well.  While there are good paid podcasts (EMRAP, EMCast, EMA), the podcasts listed below are free (FOAM) and enable one to listen to lectures that are meaningful and relevant. Choose your own lecturer, style, subject, and classroom for a world-class education.  The quality and quantity of podcasts is continously growing, thus this entry will change accordingly.

Aren't these things nerdy?  
  • The following features really make them worthwhile:  (1) Rewind - Amazing for those of us with compromised attention spans. (2) The 1.5-3x speed option - studying in half the time, leaving time for fun!  Know as much as the gunners without acting like one.
  • FOAM Workout!  I started listening to podcasts so I wouldn't feel guilty about carving out so much time from studying to enjoy solid daily workouts at the gym..that's literally active learning.  
  • The world becomes your class room.  Feel guilty about going to the beach when everyone else is at the library cramming for the USMLE?  Not anymore..these podcasts are actually great prep and they travel well (on commutes or vacations).
  • On a more serious note, Life in the Fast Lane (LITFL)  gives a great rundown here of the benefits, drawbacks, and utility of podcasts.  
  • Note:  Despite the extent to which I pared down the list, it may seem overwhelming so start with one or two that look like what you're after. 
What are these "podcasts?" 
  • This posting merely exists to demonstrate one student's take on the podcasting world in hopes of making the navigation of this virtual world easier for other students.   I was introduced to podcasts via EMCrit and began listening to EM Basic two years later.  Logic dictates the reverse...Learn from my mistakes.
  • These podcasts will equip you with incredible knowledge and keep you current to provide the optimum patient care.  Just know that your knowledge may make you appear ridiculous at times.  For example, during my first month of third year clerkships, I spent a weekend exploring life in the ED.  While working up patients, I included some things I learned from the EMCrit podcasts: (1) delayed sequence intubation in an agitated and deteriorating COPD patient and (2) the HiNTs battery in working up a posterior stroke.  On both occasions I was met with laughter and stares, which is rather embarrassing, regardless of the frequency with which it occurs. 
The Best of the Emergency-Medicine-Centric Podcasts for Students (LITFL has a comprehensive and searchable database  
  • Want to know the basic approach to common EM scenarios?  Check out EMBasic - Dr. Steve Carroll.  Podcasts are succinct, clear reviews of major topics in EM.  A couple of times each month, Dr. Carroll reviews a practice changing piece of EM relevant literature.  This is such a jewel and an incredible primer for all medical students on clinically clerkships.
  • ERCAST - Dr. Rob Orman.  Each podcast tackles a different topic, often with a guest "expert" in the field.  You'll learn a ton of pragmatic information, including ways to reduce shoulders (Cunningham technique) and amazing ways you and your friends can ruin dinner conversation for nearby diners (reference disimpaction episode). 
  • UC - Irvine Emergency Medicine Talks - Lectures based on EM core content, generally excellent
  • Ultrasound Podcast - These are excellent video podcasts that are funny, concise, informative, and engaging.  These guys, Dr. Mike Mallin and Dr. Matt Dawson, can make anyone passionate about this imaging modality.  They also have an incredible iPhone/Droid app "1 Minute Ultrasound."   
  • Free Emergency Medicine Talks - These are great talks also available on iTunes and cover important EM topics.  There's a searchable bank of thousands of talks, if you're interested in a particular topic.  Talks downloaded from the site (ex: from major EM conferences) can be converted into podcasts for quicker listening.  Right click on the selection, choose 'get info,' then 'options.'  Then change media type from 'music' to 'podcast.' 
  • The EM Res Podcast - Dr. Bob Stuntz's podcast is new to the scene but has thus far proved to be an excellent addition with reviews of basic topics in EM.  I have a feeling there's much more goodness to come!
  • Emergency Medicine Cases - Free episodes available, which delve more deeply into the workup and treatment of various common ED ailments.    
Want to look (and be) well read?
  • Annals of Emergency Medicine - Monthly highlights from the journal with discussion of important and controversial articles.
  • Persiflager's Infectious Disease Puscast - Yes, this revoltingly named podcast is actually a gem.  The Puscast is a twice monthly summary of the latest infectious disease literature, hosted by the humorous Dr. Mark Crislip.
  • EMJClub - New journal club podcast from Washington University with a succinct review of the evidence on a various EM related topics.
Cutting Edge:
  • EMCrit - Dr. Scott Weingart.  Cutting edge topics in EM and critical care.  These podcasts are amazing and innovative but are oftentimes at the forefront of critical care and EM and may occasionally be beyond the medical student scope.  There are plenty of practical jewels for medical students though, including airway pearls, understanding ETCO2, lactate, and great discussions with Dr. Rivers on the "Surviving Sepsis" campaign, etc.
  • Social Media and Critical Care conference - all lectures from the SMACC conference were recorded and are freely available.
Evidence Based Medicine:
  • SMARTEM - Dr. David Newman and Dr. Ashley Shreves dive extremely deep into the evidence on various topics that will wreck your understanding of common topics such as treatment of acute pharyngitis, chest pain risk, CT scanning, and stress testing.  These are dense; however, there are excellent supplements from the blog Sinai EM Media Site.
  • Practical Evidence - Dr. Scott Weingart's podcast succinctly summarizing one ACEP clinical policy (ex: penetrating neck trauma) each episode.
  • The Skeptics Guide to Emergency Medicine:  new podcast working to cut knowledge translation in medicine from >10 years to 1 year.  Short, sweet, and a good intro to EBM.
  • EMPEM - great pediatric supplement address common pediatric complaints with literature and evidence reviews.  Great oldere pisodes on bronchiolitis and the like (not updated recently)
  • PEMED -  Podcast on all things pediatric, including procedural tips for LPs, airways, and IVC imaging.
  • ToxTalk from the University of Massachusetts.  This podcast is somewhat sporadically put out but is packed with toxicology gems.  
  • OHSU Toxicology Journal Club - excellent recordings of literature reviews of hot tox topics
General Medicine for the Early Med School Years: Having trouble understanding the importance of the citric acid cycle or intracellular ion shifts during basic science lectures?  Fell asleep during class?  Augment this dry knowledge with relevant clinical scenarios and understanding.
  • Anatomy for Emergency Medicine delivered succinctly and in sweet dulcet tones courtesy of Dr. Andy Neill.  These are superb, brief videos that really emphasize the clinical aspects of anatomy.
  • University of Iowa Department of Emergency Medicine - A great archive of lectures covering common ED presentations.
  • ICU Rounds - Dr. Jeffrey Guy.  New episodes are unpredictably published on iTunes but the old episodes are a wealth of information and often very good about reviewing the physiological underpinnings.  These are a great clinical supplement to physiology/biochemistry! 
  • Surgery 101 - This is a regular, ongoing series targeted specifically to medical students on clinical clerkships.  It's a great supplement for anatomy and EM, with episodes on trauma, abdominal pain, appendicitis, etc.
  • Hospital Medicine with Dr. Gil Porat - great for any student on clinical clerkship, even those unswayed by EM's amazing nature, yet.
  • Learning Radiology - it's crucial to be able to interpret your own films and images, this is a great Q&A style video cast.
Miscellaneous goodness if you have the time:
  • TraumaCast - the EAST podcast on various trauma topics
  • EM: RSI - There are only five episodes on this "Residency Survival Information" but they are excellent.
  • There are a good number of "Grand Rounds" podcasts.  Duke Emergency Medicine serves as a good example where there are a smattering of Duke's EM Residency didactics.  The audio quality varies on these but there is a cornucopia of great talks on radiation, imaging, and toxicology.  Additionally, these really emphasize the fundamental scientific foundations 
  • A Gobbet o' Pus - Sounds nasty but these short 5 minute cases by Mark Crislip are ID pearls and are generally entertaining, interesting, and quick.
Critical Care (both take in depth looks at various issues in critical care):
But I'm a visual learner and I still haven't had enough! 
This is a different beast...Check out where you can subscribe to LITFL's feed.  There's also mind-blowing goodness at and from Academic Emergency Medicine


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