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Anesthesiology Interns EBM Session: PICO Practice

Practice Question 1

22 y/o female
Gestation = 23rd week
Presented to the ED with 3 days of right lower quadrant pain, anorexia, and persistent nausea/vomiting
WBC = 12,000/mm3
Hemoglobin = 12.1
Hematocrit = 34.9%
Platelet = 306,000/mm3
Meds = prenatal vitamins, folate, and iron sulfate
DX = acute appendicitis
BP: 127/68
HR: 86
Resp: 18
Temp: 97.5
Weight: 98 kg
Height: 5'8''
Mallampati Score: 2
Intact dentition 
Full range of neck motion
Thyromental space > 5 centimeters
Smaller than normal endotracheal tube used

Question: Which induction agent should be used?

Now let's practice parsing the question into terms of PICO(T)

Practice Question 2

How effective is the prophylactic use of ondansetron for preventing postoperative nausea and vomiting in adult surgical patients?


1. Parse the question into concepts

2. List terms for each concept including both textwords and MeSH subject headings

3. Use terms to create search strategies and run them in PubMed

4. Look at results

   a. How many abstracts did you get?

   b. How can you increase the yield?

   c. How can you decrease the yield?

   d. How relevant are your results


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Mary Edwards
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