Clinical exam: an introduction
Thursday, January 2, 2020
The clinical examination is an important part of any patient consultation. After the primary survey and patient history, a more in-depth examination of the patient is required in order to aid the working diagnosis and help negate other differential diagnoses. The extent of this depends on the stability of the patient condition and may not be possible in time-critical circumstances. However, it is becoming an increasing part of paramedic practice due to continued expansion of the scope of the paramedic role, both in urgent and emergency care. Educational delivery of clinical examinations of each of the main body systems is now an integral part of undergraduate paramedic curricula.The forthcoming Clinical Examination series will provide a step-by-step overview for each of the main body systems. Continuing professional development (CPD) is an essential requirement for all clinicians in order to maintain and demonstrate currency and advancement within their roles (Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) 2018). This series will therefore provide an overview of each examination to support students, newly qualified paramedics, and paramedics wishing to utilise these as a CPD development activity and an aide-memoire for clinical practice. This article will provide an introduction to the series, a guide to the intended use and an overview of initial examination considerations, including first impressions.
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