When people find out I work for a large system, usually one of the first question I get asked is “what drugs do you carry?” It’s really easy to say “the same as you” but sometimes, that’s not really true. Starting this week you get to find out what’s in our drug boxes. Jamie Davis, the Podmedic, used to do drug a week on his MedicCast show (which you should really listen to, that and EMS Garage) so I’m going to adopt a similar approach and mention a few drugs in our box at a time. Let’s start alphabetically.
Adenosine – fast acting, short lasting cardiac drug that causes a transient heart block by causing hyperpolarization. We give a 6 mg dose and 12 mg dose, but omit the second 12 mg dose to opt for something else.
Albuterol sulfate – the old standby beta agonist used to combat bronchiole constriction to resolve or relieve asthma attacks, COPD exacerbations, or allergic reactions. Our packaging comes with 2.5 mg in 3 mL in those little plastic things. Some medics like to “double up” doses in the nebulizer to make the treatment last longer.
Amiodarone – This is an antidysrhythmic introduced in 2005 into EMS as a substitute or replacement for lidocaine. Comes pre-loaded.
Aspirin – non-enteric coated chewable 81 mg. Comes in a multi-use bottle.
Atropine sulfate – the essential anticholinergic drug that blocks the vagus nerve and increases heart rate. It comes pre-loaded.