The following are my answers to search engine queries that landed a person on my blog.
1. Why is susphrine no longer used: For those who don't know what it is, susphrine is a long acting version of epinephrine that was used primarily in the 1970s and 1980s in emergency rooms for asthma. It was used mainly because it would get the asthmatic breathing better fast and then it would continue to work for 3-4 hours. This length of time would be enough to allow the systemic corticosteroids to start working. In this way, instead of having the patient sit in the ER for this length of time the doctor could send the patient home. The idea is that as soon as the asthmatic gets home the steroids should start taking effect and breathing should be better. The medicine is no longer used because Albuterol is an alternative that's safer and works just as well according to studies. In the ER a doctor can 3-4 Albuterol breathing treatments.
2. Why do some RTs continue to smoke: RTs are people too. There is no reason that an RT cannot smoke. The U.S. is a free nation and each person has a right to do as he chooses so long as he doesn't infringe on the natural rights of other people. An RT - like all Americans - even has the right to choose things that other people view as wrong or even stupid. Yes, YOU too have a right to be stupid if you want. Yet your definition of stupid may be different than another persons.
3. What kind of problems are encountered without an RT in the ER setting: I think ER physicians and RNs are perfectly qualified to handle an emergency situation without an RT. They are all ACLS qualified, should be able to do ABGs, and breathing treatments. An ABG is a procedure and should not take precidence to treating the patient anyway. As an RT who often works nights, if there was a code on the floor and in ER I'd go to the floor code because I have faith the ER staff can handle things on their own. I don't mean any disrespect for floor nurses, I just think the ER staff deals with emergencies more often than floor nurses. However, in the case of an emergency, the RT is usually the first person called -- and often STAT.