Research Portfolio

A brief psychological intervention to promote recovery after mild traumatic brain injury

Mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) is a common injury with potentially profound consequences. Although many patients recover within a few days to a few weeks, an estimated 15-40% develop post-concussion syndrome (PCS), which consists of an array of cognitive, emotional, and physical symptoms.(TBI symptoms that persist beyond three months often develop into a chronic, potentially life-long, health problem.) PCS is associated with problems returning to work, social difficulties, higher healthcare utilisation, and poorer quality of life. The mitigation of PCS represents a significant clinical problem. An effective evidence-based early intervention to prevent PCS is sorely needed. There is a growing…

Principal Investigator: Dr Shane Martin
Amount Awarded: $69,657


First aid oxygen treatment of divers with decompression sickness

Decompression sickness (DCS), commonly called the bends, involves formation of gas bubbles in the body following scuba diving. These bubbles can cause a variety of problems, ranging from minor aches and pain, to severe stroke-like symptoms. Providing pre-hospital oxygen therapy at the highest concentration possible provides needed oxygen to body tissues, reduces bubbles and can often relieve symptoms. Oxygen has been shown to reduce the number of hyperbaric treatments a diver with DCS will require so improving pre-hospital oxygen delivery will lead to decreased hospital costs. However, the ideal oxygen delivery system has not been determined. Using new techniques and…

Principal Investigator: Dr Denise Blake
Amount Awarded: $30,003


Ketamine versus propofol in sedation of psychiatric patients requiring retrieval

The aeromedical retrieval of acute psychiatric patients is a challenging scenario for the most experienced clinician. This is due to the potential for unpredictable behaviour among these patients, coupled with the inherent dangers of the aviation environment. Chemical restraint is one of the accepted strategies in this environment to ensure patient and crew safety and to minimise patient distress. Benzodiazepines and antipsychotics have been the most commonly employed drugs for chemical restraint, although they are sometimes limited by adverse reactions and inadequate sedation endangering the safety of patient and health care providers. Consequently, there has been increasing interest in drugs…

Principal Investigator: Dr Vinay Gangathimmaiah
Amount Awarded: $8,400


Is prednisolone an effective treatment for Bell’s Palsy in children?

Bell’s palsy or acute idiopathic lower motor neurone facial paralysis is characterised by sudden onset paralysis or weakness of the muscles to one side of the face controlled by the facial nerve. It is the third most common neurological reason for children to present acutely to hospital. In adults, there is conclusive evidence from two major recent trials that a short course of prednisolone, a cheap, widely available and safe steroid, can significantly increase the number of Bell’s palsy patients who completely recover. While the medical problems associated with Bell’s palsy are similar, in children there is no good evidence…

Principal Investigator: Dr Shane George
Amount Awarded: $68,179


Carotid doppler ultrasound with passive leg raise for fluid responsiveness

Fluid therapy is a valuable entity and a valuable clinical entity. However there is uncertainty regarding the fluid responsiveness of patients, particularly those with severe infections. Potential risks of fluid overload (i.e. too much fluid) exist. Excessive fluid administration is associated with increased morbidity and mortality. Carotid doppler ultrasound and passive leg raise is a way of estimating fluid responsiveness. By using this technique we believe that it will tell us if a patient will tolerate an intravenous fluid bolus of 500ml. The aim of this study is to determine if doppler ultrasound of the common carotid artery blood flow…

Principal Investigator: Dr Sangeeth Mohan
Amount Awarded: $5,150

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