Dr Andy McClea and his YouTube view of the Expedition and Wilderness Medicine Course in Keswick

Expedition and Wilderness Medicine Course in Keswick

Wilderness Medicine courses

New Diving and Marine Medicine location – Maldives, Indian Ocean.

Diving Medicine Training Course in the Maldives

Diving Medicine Training Course in the Maldives

Diving and Marine Medicine Training Course – Indian Ocean

3 – 9 OCTOBER 2010 ABOARD THE LIVEABOARD MV ARI QUEEN, THE MALDIVES

Expedition and Wilderness Medicine are very excited at being able to offer an inspirational course for all those medical professionals responsible for clients or expedition team members in a diving or marine environment.

This is a 6 day course, aiming to give participants an understanding of conditions likely to occur whilst working as a doctor on a diving expedition. Topics covered will include pre-expedition medicals, diving-related illness, marine envenomation, emergency treatments and casevac plans. Practical sessions include boat handling, search & rescue and underwater communications. There will be at least 2 dives a day, including a night dive and hopefully a visit to the hyperbaric chamber on Kuramathi Island – the largest facility in the Maldives. At the end of the week, participants should feel confident to act as medical officer on a diving expedition, or in any UK diving medical practice. Read the ‘What to Expect’ section below to get more of an idea of what the course entails.

MINIMUM COURSE REQUIREMENTS
All participants are expected to at least have a PADI Open Water qualification (or equivalent) with a minimum of 10 dives. Ideally participants should have PADI Advance Open Water qualification (or equivalent) as we will be doing some current diving. Conditions are dependent on dive sites, currents and times of year. If your qualification is not recent we recommend you complete at least 2 or 3 refresher dives before the course so that you get the most out of the fantastic diving the Maldives offers.
If the group is mixed, the dives will be split into 2 groups, so that each group is diving to its own ability.
PARTICIPANTS MUST BRING WITH THEM THEIR DIVE QUALIFICATION CERTIFICATES AND LOG BOOKS AS PROOF OF DIVING QUALIFICATIONS.

The Diving And Marine Medicine Course is accredited for FAWM points but we are waiting for confirmation of these as the Diving medicine course has moved to a new location.

CME accredited wilderness medical training courses.

Free Medical Training for Media Production Companies working in Remote Locations

Medical Training for Media Expedition Media TrainingProduction Companies

December 3rd 2009
09.00 – 13.00

Royal Geographical Society, London

This is a free training seminar, limited to 25 places, for people involved in filming or media projects abroad in locations where medical cover is not close at hand. It will highlight the biggest risks and you will learn how to administer immediate care and the importance of including the medical provision in your planning.

Anyone who is part of a media crew or production company working on location abroad in remote environments or who is filming and photographing adventurous activities.

Interested?   Then contact Piers Carter on  Piers@expeditionmedicine.co.uk  or  07801 104604

Expedition and Wilderness Medical Training

Cervical collar or SAM splint in a pre-hospital wilderness environment – Dr Sean Hudson reviews

For some time there has been a debate about the value of cervical collars in the pre-hospital wilderness environment. A recent article has lent weight to the ‘don’t take collars on expedition’ protagonists.

The recent journal of Wilderness and Environmental Medicine: Vol. 20, No. 2, pp. 166–168 compares a molded SAM splint as a collar with the traditional philadelphia collar.

The SAM splint was simply wrapped and molded around the C spine. and degrees of movement of the C spine were tested in all planes.

They found no significant difference in the ability of the 2 collars at limiting movement of the cervical spine. Podolsky and colleagues, in a prior study, found that the Philadelphia collar is as effective as numerous other collars available for cervical spine immobilization.

None of these devices has the broad range of uses that can be performed by a SAM splint (in addition to limiting movement of the cervical spine) The ability to carry one universal device for so many different medical conditions is one of the advantages of the SAM splint. This study helps to validate the practice of using a SAM splint as a universal splint for environments with limited medical supplies.

For more information on Expedition and Wilderness Medicine visit www.expeditionmedicine.co.uk.

Wilderness Medicine resources and training courses.

Sarah Outen – makes it with a little help from EWM!! The first Britian to row in the India Ocean and the first female ever!

Sarah Outen in a breathtaking achievement and with a little help in terms of support and training from Expedition and Wilderness Medicine has successfully become the first Britian and the first woman ever to row across the Indian Ocean and the youngest woman to solo any ocean- massive congratulations to her from us

A very exciting, record-breaking, and ever so slightly crazy sort of challenge. It involved my little boat, the Indian Ocean and lots of chocolate. April Fools Day 2009 I set out from Western Australia in a bid to become the first woman to row solo across this ocean. 124 days later after 4,000 miles, having eaten all my chocolate, faced storms and mid-ocean capzies , I landed in Mauritius. It was raw and elemental – just as adventure should be.

Find out more about Sarah’s epic row at http://www.sarahouten.co.uk or donate online via JustGiving

Landing at the end of the record breaking row

Landing at the end of the record breaking row

News just in…Namibia Ultra Marathon completed

We’ve just heard from the Namibia Ultra Marathon race director Steve Clark, that everyone is now back in Swakopmund. Steve said the race was very tough with temperatures getting up to 42 ºc. Winner Darren Roberts was very surprised and shocked to hear he won the race but once it sunk in he was delighted. Tom Adams very nearly caught Darren up at the finish line which made it a nail-biting finish.

Namibia 24-hr Ultra Marathon Results are as follows:

1st Place – Darren Roberts 20hr 28

2nd Place – Tom Adams 20hr 29

3rd Place – Tom Maguire 21 hr 05

4th Place – Emma Rogan 21 hr 27 – First female to complete the Namibia 24-hr Ultra Marathon

5th Place – Jerry Haywood 22 hr 30

6th Place – Nick Tidbull 23 hr 17

7th Place – Nicholas Wright 23 hr 45

8th Place – Helen Skelton 23 hr 50 – BBC Blue Peter Presenter

9th Place – Adrian Crossley, Stuart Moore, Kellie Power & Michael Skakesheff 25 hr 07. These guys all crossed the line together holding hands, they were all just outside the 24 hour deadline but all were allowed to finish.

Dr Amy Hughes will when she’s back write up about the medical situations she was faced with on the race and how people coped with the extreme heat.

Continue reading

Expedition and Wilderness Medicine partners with the Wilderness Medical Society of America

Wilderness Medical Society Approved Courses

Wilderness Medical Society Approved Courses

All of Expedition and Wilderness Medicine Courses are approved for credit by the Wilderness Medical Society (WMS) for the Academy of Wilderness Medicine Fellowship Program (FAWM). For more information visit: http://www.wms.org The Wilderness Medical Society has entered a partnership with Expedition and Wilderness Medicine to offer you an opportunity to earn credits towards the WMS Academy of Wilderness Medicine Fellowship program (FAWM).

This is an exciting postgraduate qualification in Expedition and Wilderness Medicine which is likely to become the gold standard in this field.

What is the FAWM?

The Fellowship in the Academy of Wilderness Medicine is designed for individuals who want to be acknowledged for their professional achievement in Wilderness Medicine, and wish to validate their training for their patients, and clients. This initiative between Expedition and Wilderness Medicine and WMS offers a means to identify those who have achieved a demanding set of requirements. Society members enrol in the Academy and, by completing Expedition and Wilderness Medicine courses, receive credit for specific, identifiable experience, accumulating credit toward becoming a Fellow.

Any current member of the Wilderness Medical Society who successfully completes the requirements will have the distinction of being a registered member of the Academy of Wilderness Medicine and entitled to use the designation Fellow of the Academy of Wilderness Medicine (FAWM) and may reference it on resumes, business cards, and advertisements. The Academy maintains a demanding set of requirements that validates each member’s qualifications in wilderness medicine. C

andidates for the Academy participate in Expedition and Wilderness Medicine Courses and receive credit for the topics covered. When candidates fulfil the requirements of the Core Curriculum and demonstrate other required experience in Wilderness Medicine, they qualify to be reviewed to become members of the Academy with the designation “Fellow of the Academy of Wilderness Medicine.”

To find out more visit the Expedition and Wilderness Medicine website.

Expedition and Wilderness Medicine is chosen to provide backstop support for Pen Hadows latest expedition to the pole

The Catlin Arctic Survey

The Catlin Arctic Survey

Pen Hadows latest expedition supported by HRH Prince of Wales is to be supported by the medical resources of Expedition and Wilderness Medicine.

 

The Catlin Arctic Survey Expedition is an international collaboration between polar explorers and some of the world’s foremost scientific bodies. It seeks to resolve one of the most important environmental questions of our time:

How long will the Arctic Ocean’s sea ice cover remain a permanent feature of our planet?

The team will be travelling on foot, hauling sledges from 80°N 140°W, across 1200-km of disintegrating and shifting sea ice, for around 100 days, in temperatures from 0ºC down to -50°C.

Essential data:

Despite the technological advances of the 20th century, we still only have estimates of the thickness of the sea ice cover on the Arctic Ocean. Travelling across the sea ice, the Catlin Arctic Survey team will take precise measurements of its thickness and density. This will enable the programme’s Science Partners to determine, with a greater degree of accuracy, how long the ice cap will remain. Currently, its predicted meltdown date is anywhere between four and a hundred years from now.

Global significance:

The melting of the sea ice will accelerate climate change, sea level rise and habitat loss on a global scale. Its loss is also a powerful indicator of the effects of human activity on our planet’s natural systems and processes. The Survey’s scientific findings will be taken to the national negotiating teams working to replace the Kyoto Protocol agreement at the UN Climate Change Conference of Parties in Copenhagen in December 2009.

Pioneering technology:

The Catlin Arctic Survey has developed and tested a portable, ice-penetrating radar. This will take continuous and detailed measurements of both the snow and ice layers along the 1200 km route.

Ground-breaking satellite communications equipment, developed specifically for this project, will allow the survey team to transmit their unfolding story directly from the ice to a global audience.

 

Expedition and Wilderness Medicine Staff Bio: Dr Denny Levett

Denny Levett
Denny Levett is a Specialist Registrar in Critical Care and Anaesthesia at UCL. She is the deputy director of the Centre for Altitude, Space and Extreme Environment Medicine at UCL and has extensive experience in expedition medicine.

Denny has research interests in altitude medicine and diving and hyperbaric medicine and is a keen climber and diver.

She was the Expedition medical officer for the Caudwell Xtreme Everest research expedition in 2007 (www.xtreme-everest.co.uk) responsible for more than 250 climbers, investigators and volunteers in the field. She was also the expedition Deputy Research leader and is currently completing a phd in altitude physiology.

In 2005, Denny worked as a diving and hyperbaric medicine fellow at the Alfred Hospital, Melbourne, Australia treating divers with decompression sickness. She has spent nine months working as the expedition medical officer on three marine biology diving expeditions in Africa, Fiji and Oman.

Denny has also worked as a Medical Officer for ‘Across the Divide Expeditions’ since 1999. She has accompanied groups on hiking, white water rafting and mountain biking expeditions in remote locations including Guatemala, Nepal, Patagonia, Lapland and Peru.

Expedition and Wilderness Medicine’s Medical Facualty.

A participant’s write up – Polar Medicine Training Course February 2008

Polar Medicine Training Course | Norway

The setting for this year’s polar medicine training course was Alta, a small settlement, 72 degrees north and well within the arctic circle. A place with a deserted high street where you would be lucky to see one other passer by every 15 minutes, easily explained by a temperature at least ten degrees below freezing and a good foot of snow on the ground.

Base camp was a 40 km drive along icy roads to a picturesque mountain lodge by the name of Ongajoksetra. At the higher altitude the temperature was that much lower and if a wind was blowing, temperatures as low as minus fifty could be achieved. We were introduced to the Scandinavian team who would teach us methods of navigation across such tough terrain in harsh conditions and also to the Expedition Medicine team who would teach us polar medicine in a series of lectures and practical sessions both in the classroom and in the field. One more group I must not forget to mention is the team of fifty sled dogs who would provide another mode of transport across the snow.

Dr Claire Roche, Polar MedicineMy first day involved skidooing up a mountain demonstrating the importance of protective clothing, navigation aids and preparation for travel in severe blizzards with visibility of approximately two metres, sudden drops in temperature and rapid weather changes. I realised that without our trustworthy guide, Espen Ottem, we could become hopelessly lost in such conditions where you would be unable to survive more than a couple of hours at most. Our dog sledding guide, Pre-Thore was the perfect example of this as he told us of the time where inadequate preparation resulted in frostbite, blackening of his fingertips but fortunately no amputation. This story made me somewhat paranoid about the daily pain and numbness in my hands and feet when outside in the cold for prolonged periods. A “buddy system” was paramount to preventing frostnip. Simply by having that small exposed area of skin, pointed out to you to cover up

Dr Leslie Thomson, a consultant anaesthetist who had first – hand experience of polar medicine after spending several years in Antarctica taking part in the British Antarctic Survey gave an excellent lecture on hypothermia, bringing home how hypothermia is not just a condition seen near the poles but also in the Saturday night party goer who collapses under the stars, the homeless and the elderly. We were taught how to treat by various re-warming methods and when to commence C.P.R in the hypothermic patient sending home the message of not pronouncing death until warm and dead in certain individuals. This information was demonstrated by the story of Dr Anna Bagenholm , a 29 year old doctor who fell into icy water whilst skiing in Northern Sweden, immersed for approximately an hour, her body temperature was 13.7 degrees centigrade. C.P.R continued for three and a half hours alongside re-warming techniques such as bypass, bladder / stomach / peritoneal lavage and warm intravenous fluids. She survived to become the person with the lowest body temperature ever to survive.

Expedition and Wilderness Medicine obviously feel that first- hand experience is the best way of teaching and as a result each member of the group had to undergo cold water immersion. Prior to undertaking this challenge we were kindly taught about the cardiac arrhythmias that can be induced by the shock of entering the water, the short term cold water gasp reflex increasing the chance of aspiration and swimmers failure! One by one we stepped up to an ice hole in our thermal underwear and in the more daring members of the group a little less! to swim across icy water. I can confidently say that was the coldest I had ever been. As if several knives had been plunged into my body, breath taking and inducing chest pain, I swam across water of ridiculously low temperature to attempt getting out of the hole using my ski poles

Of our nights spent in the field we were taught how to construct snow holes. Five hours later our own little home with two double beds, stove, cupboards and shelves for our candles was constructed. It was as comfortable as it could be on a mountain side with winds blowing outside dropping the temperature to twenty below. I was amazed that the snow hole was so warm at five degrees compared to the outside however a slight air of nervousness was in the back of my mind as my avalanche detector slowly flashed in the corner and a rope attached to a spade inside connected our holes to other holes in case of us having to be dug out. The course perfectly demonstrated how to survive in such conditions

In summary the course prepared 25 everyday doctors to be able to traverse the polar landscape, recognise and competently treat local cold injury and hypothermia as well as to be safe expedition medics capable of caring for their groups and evacuating when required. To spend a week in such a location gave me the upmost respect for those who live in these regions and cross the landscape as part of everyday life, as well as a great respect for the land. In a day and age of global warming and melting of the polar ice caps it becomes paramount to look after our environment, to take only photographs and to leave only footprints.

Dr Claire Roche, Clinical Fellow in Emergency Medicine Countess of Chester Hospital.  See the BMJ article.

The next expedition medicine course will be in Desert Medicine Course which will be held in Namibia, August 17th -23rd 2008.

To see the full range of Expedition and Wilderness Medicine Training Courses see here.

Desert Medicine Training Course | Namibia