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Faculty Research Projects

Our faculty are actively involved in a variety of clinical research areas:

  • Health Literacy: Despite its relevance to emergency medicine, little is known about the effect of patient health literacy on ED related outcomes. Health literacy is the degree to which individuals have the capacity to obtain, process, and understand basic health information and services needed to make appropriate health decisions. In order to fill this gap in scientific knowledge, we are exploring the effects of health literacy on ED related outcomes from the perspective of the ED population
    • Partners: College of Public Health and Health Professions
    • PI: Dr. Donna Carden
  • Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI): An acute injury to the brain can result in both immediate devastating and long-term chronic deficits.  While interventions are available for severe cases, limited evidence exists on the long-term progression of disease or prevention of poor outcomes such as neurologic and cognitive deficits.  In order to explore these areas and developeducational  tool, we are investigating characteristics of a population of brain injured patients
    • Partners: Department of Neurology, Department of Neurosurgery, Department of Radiology, Department of Surgery, Division of Trauma Surgery
    • PI: Dr Robyn Hoelle
  • Acute Stroke and TIA: Novel interventions have advanced our understanding of stroke management.  Our research focuses on outcomes research with a special interest in prediction models, biochemical markers, and acute interventions.
    • Partners: Department of Neurology
  • Geriatric Emergency Medicine: The growth of the elderly population has shifted the traditional paradigm of medicine to focus on the care of the aging population in order to prevent disease and enhance quality of life.   Specific projects include investigations to minimize medication errors, outcomes of readmitted senior patients, and acute falls and fractures. Studies also focus on screening elderly patients for alcohol dependence, depression, and baseline functioning measurements.
    • Partners: Center for Aging
  • Obesity:  The epidemic of overweight individuals is a public health issue that impacts persons of all ages and influences the overall incidence of chronic disease such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease in the US.  Characterizing this population and the outcomes of their care in emergency medicine is needed.  Our investigations evaluate trends and behaviors associated with care of the overweight.
  • Pulmonary Embolism:  Emergency physicians are frequently confounded by the presentation of pulmonary embolism which can result in death if left  undiagnosed.   Our research aims to understand how to enhance the clinical approach to special at-risk populations in the acute setting.
  • Acute Kidney Injury: AKI is an independent risk factor for poor outcomes in multiple populations .  Effective therapies and preventive regimen are limited in the emergency department setting.  Our research aims to improve the characterization of this condition in the emergency setting.
  • Community Onset Sepsis Project: Early resuscitation of sepsis has been shown to improve survival.  Earlier recognition of sepsis may influence overall outcomes.   We aim to assess the implementation of  a pre-hospital screening program on overall outcomes of sepsis patients.
  • Pediatric Sepsis: Sepsis remains a relevant consideration in the pediatric presentation of fever.  Our research aims to develop novel readily available biomarkers to help in the stratification of children with serious bacterial infection and at risk for poor outcomes.
  • Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome: ARDS is a devastating pulmonary syndrome that is frequently the result of sepsis or pneumonia.  While therapeutic interventions have been limited, it is unclear if measures exist to prevent the disease or to slow the progression of early presentations. In this randomized prospective placebo-control blind study, aspirin will be investigated as a preventative therapy.
  • Coagulopathic Emergencies: Anticoagulation is common among patients and the presentation of hemorrhage can be life-threatening   We are planning multi-center investigations to study novel strategies and agents for reversal and their influence on outcomes.
    • Partners: Department of Pharmacology
    • PI: Dr. Brandon Allen, Matthew Hinton, PharmD