A Narrative Review on Shock in the Emergency Room

Jorge Dantas, Rita Vaz, Rui Morais, Irene Verdasca


The patient in shock represents a common clinical challenge in the emergency room, and potentially represents an immediate lifethreatening situation that requires the intervention of different medical specialties in order for hemodynamic stabilization to be achieved. This paper reports a non-systematic review of the initial approach to the patient in shock, highlighting the adaptation of the instituted measures to the particularities of the emergency room environment. This review is structured according to a proposed protocol of action based on the early diagnosis of shock, the identification of the type of shock and the most likely cause, and the institution of supportive therapy. The initial stabilization of the patient should be guided by the identification of failing physiological mechanisms, having in mind that strategies with little meaning in other contexts may be of interest in the emergency room - as they are practical and can be rapidly implemented - as is the case with the administration of vasoactive drugs in bolus or by peripheral access.


Emergency Service, Hospital; Shock/diagnosis; Shock/etiology; Shock/therapy

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