Trau·ma  Junk· ie  ( 'trau-m&  'j&[ng]-kE) n. Slang
  1. One who has an insatiable interest, devotion or addiction to responding and assisting people with serious injury or shock to the body, as from violence or an accident.


I know just as well as the next RT student does that, at times, the material we cover in our classes is difficult to remember. Some call it information overload. I'd have to say I agree. The past week, I did quite a bit more studying than I have thus far in the program, mainly because I had three different tests and a lab practical over bedside assessment of the patient.

Normally, a combination of flash cards, lecture notes, and reading (and reading, and reading) the chapters in the textbook are enough to help me learn. However, this week I had to use some memory tools and I remembered using mnemonics in grade school. I came up with a few of my own, and learned a bunch from teachers, online, and other students in the program. They really came in handy for my tests, and I did quite well. I decided I would share some of them.

To troubleshoot problems with an endotracheal tube, remember DOPEY.
Displaced: esophagus, right mainstem, back of throat, etc
Obstructed: secretions, blood, mucus plug, kink, etc
Equipment: malfunctions, O2, ETT, BVM, ventilator, monitor
You: your approach, technique: missing something?

For the five life-threatening signs of an asthma attack, I used SHOCC (pronounced as "shock")
Silent chest
One third of best/predicted PFR

For the valves of the heart, "Toilet Paper My Apartment." I used something a bit more PG-13 for the "A," but whatever works for you.
Tricuspid valve
Pulmonary (semilunar) valve
Mitral (bicuspid) valve
Aortic valve

To remember what side of the heart tricuspid valve is on , I came up with "Tri to be right."

A classmate suggested, "Always tri before you bi," to remember that the tricuspid valve comes before the bicuspid valve. Another way to remember this is, "Tricuspid before bicuspid like learning to ride a tricycle before a bicycle."

The three types of tonsils? How about remembering, "PPL (people) have tonsils."

A way I remember which bronchi is more vertical is "Inhale a bite, goes down the right," since the right mainstem bronchus has a lesser angle.

For COPD, we learned that four diseases are commonly classified as Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease. We were told to remember the acronym, C:BABE (pronounced "see babe").

To remember where beta-1 and beta-2 receptors are located, just think: Beta-1 receptors are in the heart (and you have 1 heart), beta-2 receptors are in the lungs (and you have 2 lungs).

Well, I guess that is all I have for now. I hope these are useful. By the way, check out www.medicalmnemonics.com if you'd like to find more of these.

Does anyone have any others?

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