Waiting for an ambulance 

By Elia Petzierides

Take one severe allergic reaction to a wasp sting, two overly-protective dogs, a longer than average ambulance response time and a shot of adrenaline and you have the narrative of Mr Tony Bugeja’s final minutes. The Coroner investigating the 50-year-old’s death provided some interesting advice for those wanting to improve ambulance resourcing and also made a unique and surprising recommendation for the ambulance service which the media latched onto. Continue reading

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Update – Red alert

Patient identification standards could be on the horizon for Australian ambulance services. 
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Red alert

By Elia Petzierides

“Lots of little things done well” is chef Marco Pierre White’s recipe for perfection, and the same definition could equally apply to the healthcare setting. But as we discover in this GraveLesson, perfection isn’t always achieved in healthcare. Soon after 74-year-old Mrs Marcia Loveday presented to hospital, lots of little things (and some not so little) went wrong and she was administered a penicillin based antibiotic despite her known and recorded allergy to penicillin. She suffered a cardiac arrest moments later. How did this happen and what can be done to prevent this from happening again?

Ultra Skinny Jeans

By Elia Petzierides

Calling all hipsters, fashionistas and wearers of ultra skinny jeans: this is a serious health warning.

Hipsters like to consider themselves to be leaders of the latest cultural trends. But when a 35-year-old woman presented to the Royal Adelaide Hospital with an inability to walk, swelling and weakness to both legs she became the first person documented in medical literature to display nerve dysfunction as a result of wearing tight jeans. So what happened to this hipster pioneer whose fashion breached the human body’s physiological limits and what can be done to prevent other hipsters from suffering the same ignominy?

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From Little Things

By Elia Petzierides

When an 8-month-old female presented with signs of bowel obstruction after ingesting what was thought to be a small piece of candy she was eventually taken to the operating theatre for surgery. The cause of the obstruction highlighted a public health concern and a warning for parents and health practitioners alike.  Continue reading

Chest Pain

By Elia Petzierides

When 74 year old Connie Petzierides was sent home from hospital with the diagnosis of musculoskeletal pain no one expected her to collapse and die at home several hours later. So why did a seemingly well woman who had just spent the night being observed in hospital suddenly and unexpectedly die and what lessons can be learnt to prevent similar deaths? Continue reading

Update – Blue in the Face

Our piece on doctor shopping has generated some responses which we would like to share with you. Continue reading