The following links are ones I often share with patients I see in the Emergency Department. They represent some of the more common issues that people see a doctor for. Find curated, meaningful, reliable information below.

General Websites

From the Academy of Family Practitioners in the US. Although some specifics are American, much of the patient information is generalizable and easy to read and understand with excellent illustrations.

Pathways BC

Access information on programs and services in the Victoria community as well as BC wide.

Vancouver Coastal Health

I love the multilingual discharge information and searchable online resource catalogue.

Lots of Patient Health Education materials


Common illnesses and conditions. Not just limited to BC despite the name. Lots of great information and a symptom-checker.

Searchable multilingual online resource catalogue from the UK

Bad Science Watch

An independent non-profit consumer protection watchdog and science advocacy organization dedicated to improving the lives of Canadians by countering bad science

Pain and Opiods

Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome (CHS)

A growing problem and cause of cyclic vomiting, often improved with a hot bath or shower


Empowering people living with pain. Coaching, telephone support, and wellness support groups.

Chronic Pain Resources

Statistics from the Canadian Pain Coalition indicate that 13 to 30% of Canadians suffer from chronic pain, which can impact all areas of a person’s life, mind, body and spirit.


Mental Health


Plenty of helpful and practical tips for mood, sleep, phobias, calm breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, OCD, and more.


Evidence-based information, Mindfulness apps for smartphone listing, and free downloadable or playable meditations from their Art of Living Mindfully CD


Basic information from a reliable source

This video describes the Catch-22‘s of depression

How Can I Help?

A podcast about mental health issues from a psychiatrist. Easy to understand and listen to

Dr Gail Saltz

Youth Mental Health in BC

Young people aged 12-24 and their caregivers can access virtual services through the Foundry BC app from anywhere in British Columbia!

The Foundry

Wellness and Evidence-Based Happiness

Greater Good Science Centre

Researched and tested, neuroscience and neurobiology-based tips and techniques to promote long-lasting happiness. I love their Keys to Well Being, and their monthly action calendars.

University of California, Berkeley

The Science of Well-Being

I really enjoyed this free online program from Dr Laurie Santos out of Yale. Her undergrad course “Psychology and the Good Life” broke registration records and teaches so many gems. Terms you’ll learn include “miswanting”–that stuff we think will make us happy actually doesn’t–and why we put less importance on what actually makes us happier. I was just as guilty as the next person.


Listen to her podcast “The Happiness Lab”

Head and Neck and Neurology

Benign Positional Vertigo

BPPV is a treatable and common cause of attacks of spinning, especially with head movements


Minor head injuries can lead to physical symptoms that last days, weeks, or months.

Concussion Guidelines

Step-wise Return to Activity, with versions for athletes, coaches, parents, and teachers

Return to Work

Return to School & Sport

Fainting Avoidance

Counter-Pressure techniques can help if you get warning like lightheadness and feeling like you might pass out.

Cleveland Clinic

Nausea Reduction

This viral TikTok garnered 10 Million views in its first 48 hours


Conjunctival Hemorrhage

This is one cause of painless red eye that doesn’t need a doctor, or specific treatment. It scares people when they look in the mirror or someone notices it. There should no injury or other symptoms except localized redness (which can be dramatic!)

Heart and Lungs


Important things to know are the differences between “Relievers” and “Preventers” for inhalers, and to use a spacer so the medication gets to your lungs instead of wasted on your tongue and throat.


Brief Resolved Unexplained Event (BRUE)

A scary thing for parents when parents witness an apparent life-threatening event (ALTE was the older acronym)

American Academy of Pediatrics


Often the cause of first episode wheezing in kids, especially when they look well and happy

Cough & Honey

I don’t recommend cough syrups to patients, family, or friends. Here’s something that you’re likely to have that actually has evidence behind it



Parents get alarmed when their child develops a barking “seal-like” cough that is often worse in the evenings

Heart Attack Warning Signs

These are the classic symptoms, but beware: women, diabetics, and the elderly are likely to present atypically

Gastroenterology a.k.a. “The Guts”


It sometimes surprises me how many people come to the Emergency Department because they haven’t had a bowel movement for several days. There are so many treatments to try at home that are easily available.

Diarrhea in Kids

Parents often worry about their children when vomiting and diarrhea strike. Learn what to do and don’t forget to wash your hands so you don’t spread it around!

Canadian Pediatric Society

Diverticular Disease

There’s a big difference between “Diverticul-osis” and “Diverticul-itis.” Learn about this common cause of left lower quadrant abdominal pain and rectal bleeding.


A common cause of right upper quadrant abdominal pain. Learn the differences between biliary colic and more serious forms of biliary tract disease.


We check everyone out for heart disease when they come into the Emergency Department for heartburn. Those that have heart attack ruled out can find many ways to prevent or minimize discomfort.


Still think Emergency Medicine is sexy and heroic? Many people worry when they see bright red blood in the toilet bowl. Usually, it’s a non-serious cause such as this or diverticular bleeding.

This is a very common cause of abdominal pain that causes patients to present to Emergency Departments and clinics every day! Unfortunately, there is no test currently available to prove that someone suffers from this condition. However, it can fit a pattern and there are treatments available to try:

  • Keep a log of when you suffer pain and the foods you’ve eaten
  • Try a low FODMAP diet
  • Peppermint oil has been found to be an anti-spasmodic and may have antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, immunomodulating, and anaesthetic activities
  • Consider probiotics–but know that much of the research is company-funded and heavily prone to bias.

More info on IBS on HealthLink


Kidney Stones

I describe these to patients as a “golf ball scraping its way down a garden hose.” Did you know there are things you can do to prevent getting them?

Kidney Infections

Also known as “pyelonephritis,” these can either start from the bloodstream or from a bladder infection that travels upwards.

Sexually Transmitted Infections (STI)

Everything you wanted to know but were afraid to ask?


Abnormal Uterine Bleeding

There are many causes for heavy periods and there can be pain or risk of anemia and other complications.

Emergency Contraception

Note that the sooner medication is initiated the greater the efficacy



Early pregnancy loss can be a stressful time. It is common to have feelings of uncertainty, worry, and guilt. Here are some helpful sites:

MotHERS program


Muscles & Joints

AC Sprain a.k.a. “Separated Shoulder”

There are many causes for heavy periods and there can be pain or risk of anemia and other complications.


Back Pain

A common and stubborn cause of pain and functional problems. Sometimes people end up in the Emergency because they don’t know what else to do.

This is a broad topic but a good place to start would be the following:

American Family Physician

Choosing Wisely

Cochrane reviews of evidence


Most commonly this can show up as pain at the part where your biggest toe meets the rest of your foot.

Home Exercises

This is a gem of a resource built by a physician that has videos, images, and printable versions.


Shoulder Exercises

After any shoulder injury or pain, it can be important to do range of motion exercises to prevent a “frozen shoulder.”


Strains & Sprains

You’ll commonly hear the mnemonic RICE used (Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation).

However, newer theories about how this may actually delay healing have prompted a trend towards early, gentle, range-of-motion exercises for better recovery:

Excluding fractures, cord, or catastrophic injuries, I get patients moving post injury and doing range of motion exercises as soon as possible.”

Dr. J. Robinson, Sports Medicine Physician

  • For foot and ankle injuries [she] recommend[s] drawing the alphabet with the toes.
  • For knees: stationary biking with low tension.
  • For shoulder injuries: pendulums, pole walking, and Nordic ski.
  • For neck pain: rows and ellipse.
  • For back pain: walking, swimming, and yoga.
  • For lower limb fractures: water running and seated weights.
  • For upper limb fractures: walking and the recumbent bike.


These are external links that I do not verify in their entirety

I do not receive any funding for any links or referrals from the above sites