Drowning/Hypothermia/Trauma (EMET) 2016

EMET Pre-Learning: Major Trauma/Drowning

How we approach the management of the injured patient in the first few minutes may significantly determine their chances of survival, risk for complications, and long-term disability. In trauma patients we face the challenge of multiple potential injuries and setting priorities in treatment. In this workshop, we focus on the many aspects of trauma and discuss clinical presentation, investigation and management of these injuries.


Drowning results from asphyxia due to submersion in a liquid medium. It is a major cause of disability and death, with more than 30% of survivors sustaining moderate to severe neurologic injury. Drowning usually occurs silently and rapidly. Although we usually visualise the victim of drowning helplessly gasping and thrashing in the water, rarely is this the case. More commonly, the history is one of a motionless individual floating in the water or quietly disappearing beneath the surface. In the pre-learning module, we follow the case of a patient who presents following drowning and requires resuscitation and continuing critical care.