Robert Kec

St. Mary's Hospital, Passaic NJ, Passaic, New Jersey, United States

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Publications (3)5.17 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: The objective of this study was to determine if ED triage nurses could appropriately interpret the Ottawa Ankle Rules (OAR). We conducted a prospective, observational trial of a clinical decision rule in a suburban ED on a convenience sample of ED patients, aged >17 years with acute ankle injuries. Nurses and EPs were trained in the appropriate use of the OAR. Nurses and physicians recorded their initial blinded patient assessments on standardized data collection instruments that included the OAR. X-rays were ordered without specific discretion to OAR by nurses or physicians. Sensitivity, specificity, negative predictive value, and positive predictive value were calculated as appropriate; kappa (k) values were calculated to assess interobserver agreement (IOA). One hundred three patients enrolled: mean age 37 +/- 16 years; 67% female; 27 had fractures. IOA between nurses and physicians was moderate for overall interpretation of OAR (kappa = 0.44). IOA (kappa) for each criterion varied from (1) moderate for fifth metatarsal pain (0.56), posterior malleolar pain (0.44), medial malleolar pain (0.40), and weight bearing with foot pain (0.48); to (2) fair for weight bearing with ankle pain (0.32) and navicular pain (0.21). Sensitivity of the nurse's interpretation of OAR for fracture was 92%, specificity 36%, negative predictive value 90%, and positive predictive value 32%. Sensitivity of the EP's utilization of the OAR for fracture was 92%, specificity 47% with a negative predictive value 94%, and a positive predictive value 38%. Nurses showed only a moderate ability to interpret the overall OAR for ordering of x-rays. Nurses' understanding of the individual criterion were variable.
    American Journal of Emergency Medicine 05/2004; 22(3):145-8. · 1.70 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To determine whether triage nurses can successfully interpret the Ottawa Knee Rule (OKR) and order knee radiographs according to the OKR. This was a prospective implementation trial of a clinical decision rule, set in a suburban, community emergency department (ED), evaluating a convenience sample of ED patients aged > 17 years with acute knee injuries. Patients were excluded for altered mental status, distracting injuries, and knee lacerations. Triage nurses and attending emergency physicians (EPs) were trained in appropriate use of the OKR. The triage nurses evaluated eligible patients and radiographs were ordered according to their interpretation of the OKR. EPs who were initially blinded to the triage assessments also evaluated the patients. EPs could add an x-ray order if, according to their assessment of the OKR, one was indicated and a radiograph had not been ordered by the nurse. Nurses and EPs recorded their blinded assessments on standardized data collection instruments. Kappa values were calculated to assess interobserver agreement (IOA) between nurses and EPs; sensitivity, specificity, negative predictive value (NPV), and positive predictive value (PPV) were calculated as appropriate. One hundred three patients were enrolled; 53% were female; 10 fractures were identified (9.7%). The IOAs between the nurses and EPs for each of the criteria were moderate to almost perfect: age-0.94; fibular head tenderness-0.4; isolated patellar tenderness-0.68; inability to bend knee to 90 degrees-0.73; inability to bear weight-0.76. The IOA was moderate (0.52) for the overall interpretation of the OKR by nurses and EPs. Sensitivity of nurse interpretation of the OKR for fracture was 70%, specificity 33%, NPV 91%, PPV 10%. Sensitivity of EP interpretation of the OKR for fracture was 100%, specificity 25%, NPV 100%, PPV 13%. Triage nurses showed fair to good ability to appropriately apply the OKR to pre-order knee radiographs.
    Academic Emergency Medicine 03/2003; 10(2):146-50. · 1.76 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: A recent editorial criticized emergency medicine researchers who study the treatment of acute migraine for failing to standardize patients according to definitions provided by the International Headache Society (IHS). In fact, most emergency medicine-based studies of migraine therapies have not used IHS Criteria (IHSC) for patient inclusion and are not uniform in the definition of acute migraine. The purpose of this study was to determine the percentage of patients with complaint of headache who present to the emergency department with a prior diagnosis of migraine and/or emergency department discharge diagnosis of acute migraine that meet IHSC. The study was a prospective observational study performed in a community-based and consisted of consecutive patients with a chief complaint of headache who presented to any 1 of 6 study investigators. Patients recorded historical data on a standard form; Clinical data were recorded by the investigators. Ninety-five percent confidence intervals and the Fisher exact test were calculated as appropriate. One hundred eighty-five patients were enrolled (study group): 70% were women, 43% had prior imaging studies to diagnose the etiology of the headache, and 26% had a diagnostic workup during the current emergency department visit; the probable headache etiology was found in 12 of these cases. Only 3 patients that had an ED workup that fit IHSC. Forty-nine percent of all patients had a prior diagnosis of migraines; 41 of these patients (45%) met IHSC. Forty-two percent of all patients had an emergency discharge diagnosis of acute migraine; of these, 43 (56%) met IHSC. Forty-four out of 96 (46%; 95% confidence interval = 35%-57%) patients with a prior diagnosis of migraine and/or discharge diagnosis of acute migraine met IHSC. Modification of the IHSC, by removing restrictions for headache duration and number of prior episodes, would have markedly increased the percentage of patients with a previous migraine and/or emergency discharge diagnosis of acute migraine that met other qualitative IHSC (94%). Of the patients with prior migraine diagnosis and/or emergency department diagnosis of acute migraine, men and women were equally as likely to meet IHSC (41% v 48%, P = 0.79). Less than half of patients with a prior diagnosis and/or final emergency discharge diagnosis of acute migraine met IHSC. Our findings raise concerns about the external validity of prior emergency department-based research of acute migraine therapy and the utility of the IHSC for future research. Modification of the IHSC for emergency medicine research should be considered.
    American Journal of Emergency Medicine 12/2002; 20(7):618-23. · 1.70 Impact Factor