Joe Lex at St. Emlyn’s

On Thursday 25th April 2013 we were honoured to have Dr. Joe Lex at St. Emlyn’s as the first ever Visiting Professor in our virtual hospital.  What a way to start, with the man who has been described as the most famous emergency physician in the world.  More than 40 emergency physicians and medical students joined us for a fantastic evening at the Chancellors Hotel in Manchester.  After a fantastic dinner, selfless legend Joe passed round a bottle of a fine Polish vodka called Zubrowka that was enjoyed by many of us.  At that time, not everyone knew that the bottle contained a blade of grass marinaded in buffalo urine – but it seemed to go down well, nonetheless!


Joe talked about ’46 Years In Frontline Emergency Medicine’.  That means it’s 6 years since I first came across one of Joe Lex’s inspirational talks, which changed my outlook on Emergency Medicine completely.  You can find the original here.  The reason I feel so inspired by Joe Lex is that he talks mainly about the art of Emergency Medicine.  He’s the voice of experience telling us how we can practice patient-centred Emergency Medicine par excellence.  In these difficult times when our EDs are overcrowded, when we feel constantly pressured to process our workload faster without compromising on quality, when all around us we hear of the importance of targets and tariffs, Joe Lex is like a breath of fresh air, reminding us of what’s truly important in our practice.

We covered everything from the Hippocratic Oath (apparently Hippocrates was the founder of #FOAMEd) to the PERC rule.  Disappointingly for me, the only ‘boo’ of the night was in response to the mention of ‘high sensitivity troponin’ (or ‘low specificity troponin’ as Joe calls it) but I think I’m over it.

But the highlights were surely the pearls of wisdom that only come from spending 46 years on the frontline.  So let’s hear less from me, and more of what Joe had to say…

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Simon Carley introduces Joe Lex

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Joe Lex tells us about his life – including his time in Vietnam


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Joe Lex demonstrates how to get to the same eye level as the patient when there are no chairs


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[[/learn_more]ption=”On Challe[learn_more caption=”On Challenges We Face As Individuals”]ps://twi[blackbirdpie url=”"]ps://twitt[blackbirdpie url=”"]://twitter[blackbirdpie url=”"]/twitter.c[blackbirdpie url=”"][blackbirdpie url=”"][blackbirdpie url=”"]arn_more c[/learn_more]left feeling inspi[learn_more caption=”We left feeling inspired…”].com/DrG[blackbirdpie url=”"].com/kazpo[blackbirdpie url=”"]om/dreuben[blackbirdpie url=”"]/DrNickJen[blackbirdpie url=”"] caption=[/learn_more]many people follow[learn_more caption=”And so did many people following from afar…”]an/statu[blackbirdpie url=”"]sschakelaa[blackbirdpie url=”"]y were we so inspired?  Largely  because we had one of the most famous emergency physicians grace us with his presence in Manchester and talk to us as valued colleagues.  But also because Joe Lex talked about the principles behind our practice, about the values that made us want to do Emergency Medicine in the first place – and he put them back at the top of the agenda.  Sometimes we forget why we do this job.  Joe Lex reminded us.  And while he was at it he made us laugh.

Thanks to Joe Lex for giving us such inspiration, and to Natalie May for organising the event!  We’re going to have a lot to live up to when we arrange our second Visiting Professor, I can tell you!


Joe Lex and Rick Body

Posted by Rick Body

Professor Richard Body MB ChB, FRCEM, PhD is Professor of emergency medicine in Manchester. He is honorary Consultant in Emergency Medicine at Manchester Foundation trust. He is also the director of the Manchester Diagnostics and Technology Accelerator (DiTA) and Research Director of the Emergency Medicine and Intensive Care Research Group (EMERGING). His research interests include diagnostics, cardiac disease and the philosophy of emergency medicine. He is an acclaimed international speaker on cardiac diagnostics . He can be found on twitter as @richardbody

  1. Mohammed Kamara May 10, 2013 at 6:35 am

    Shamed I missed such an experience. It seems the prof knows what he’s talking about. I particularly like two of the published quotes :- Failure is not an option. It is a necessity !
    Good judgment is based on experience and experience is based on bad judgment !
    If only we as clinicians could adopt these principles life in EM will be worth living and enjoyable.


    1. Very true


  2. […] is returning to Manchester on 3rd July for another FOAM event so if you missed his fantastic talk last year (or if you were there but you’re ready for some more Lex-y goodness) this is your chance […]


  3. […] Joe Lex at St. Emlyn’s number 1 Joe Lex at St. Emlyn’s number 2 […]


Thanks so much for following. Viva la #FOAMed

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