Stop Crying Your Heart Out – Paediatrics at St Emlyn’s

ED INDUCTIONMost EDs in the UK see a mixture of adult and paediatric patients. You’ve probably seen sick adults as part of your F1 year but we know that for many new ED docs this is the first time you’ve seen a paediatric patient since medical school. So welcome to the world of screaming, puking, hysteria and nappies.

It’s not all bad (and some of it is actually fun!) but it can be scary. We’ve talked a lot about seeing paediatric patients in the past; about how seeing kids is child’s play, how children are just little adults (controversy from Prof Carley as ever!), and even given you some paediatric tips you won’t find in books.

It’s important to realise that most of the children we see in the ED are neither critically ill nor critically injured; minor injuries and illness make up a huge proportion of paediatric ED attendances in the UK although this may not be the cases in other countries.

Paediatric EM will stretch your communication skills like nothing else! But it’s both hugely fun and hugely rewarding and if you can overcome the terror it’s a great break from adult EM.

Further Resources

Here are some new resources, kindly shared by the University of Coventry from a teaching session I did there for paramedics.

The first video is based on my Paeds Tips talk at SMACC Gold.

The second video is longer (75mins) but covers the systematic approach to the sick child (ABCDE!) and specific things to think about when seeing neonates.

We are here to help you in any way we can – so let us know if there are specific paediatric topics we can cover. Hopefully we have a couple of podcasts on the way too…

Added 19th October 2016

I’ve written two posts for Don’t Forget the Bubbles on the mindset of the paediatric EM doctor:

For paediatric trainees new to the ED

For EM trainees new to the paediatric ED

I recommend for best results reading both 🙂





Before you go please don’t forget to…

Cite this article as: Natalie May, "Stop Crying Your Heart Out – Paediatrics at St Emlyn’s," in St.Emlyn's, September 29, 2014,

Posted by Natalie May

Dr. Natalie May, MBChB, MPHe, MSc, PGCert Medical Education, FRCEM, FACEM is section lead for paediatrics and medical education. She is an Editorial Board Member of the St Emlyn’s blog and podcast. She is a specialist in Emergency Medicine (Australia) and a Specialist in Emergency Medicine with Paediatric Emergency Medicine (UK). She works as Staff Specialist in Prehospital and Retrieval Medicine with the Ambulance Service of New South Wales (aka Sydney HEMS). She also works as aStaff Specialist, Emergency Medicine, St George Hospital (South Eastern Sydney Local Health District). Her research interests include medical education, particularly feedback; gender inequity in healthcare; paediatric emergency medicine. You can find her on twitter as @_NMay