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Emergency Services at UPMC Shadyside

Emergencies are never planned. But when they happen, it’s comforting to know that a high-quality emergency department (ED) is close to you. Our ED provides convenient access to comprehensive care for those who are injured or critically ill.

Staffed by specially-trained doctors and nurses, the ED also has access to specialists who are on-call 24 hours a day. Together, this team of health care professionals works to treat you and your medical emergency.

What to Expect

Quality care takes time. The length of your stay may depend on your symptoms, illness, and whether you have to be admitted to the hospital. Also, if the emergency physician consults with a specialist or you have special tests and x-rays performed, your stay may be longer.

When You Arrive

When you arrive, a member of the ED staff will ask you some questions. Your answers help the staff member decide how serious your condition is. This is called triage and will help determine which patient needs to be treated first. In addition, staff will take a personal and medical history, and will check your vital signs, including pulse, temperature, and blood pressure.

When You are Taken into an Exam Room

To prepare for the doctor’s exam, you might be asked to undress and change into a hospital gown. You also might be attached to monitoring devices. Periodically, nurses and doctors will visit you, but these devices help our staff keep a close and constant eye on you.

The doctor may want to have tests or x-rays performed. Some tests may require you to go to another department. If you must leave the ED, a member of our staff will take you.

Please also keep in mind that it often takes time for the results of tests or x-rays to become available. As soon as your results are available, your doctor will explain the findings to you. If patients require more advanced care, they can receive initial treatment and stabilization, and then be transferred to a hospital that specializes in the treatment of their condition.

Your Treatment

Depending on your injury or illness, your treatment may be simple or complex. Your treatment may consist of splints, bandages, or intravenous (IV) and other medications and can take a few minutes or several hours. The doctor will always discuss your treatment with you or your family. If at any time you do not understand your treatment, please ask for more information from the nurses or doctor.

The doctor determines if it is best for you to be discharged home or admitted to the hospital. If you are discharged to go home, the nurse will explain your instructions and prescriptions and answer any questions about your care or treatment. If you are admitted to the hospital, staff will take you to your room as soon as it is available.

Contact Us

UPMC Shadyside
5230 Centre Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15232


Schedule an appointment at 1-800-533-UPMC or request an appointment online.

UPMC | Affiliated with the University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences | Supplemental content provided by Healthwise, Incorporated. To learn more, visit

For help in finding a doctor or health service that suits your needs, call the UPMC Referral Service at 412-647-UPMC (8762) or 1-800-533-UPMC (8762). Select option 1.

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Medical information made available on is not intended to be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. You should not rely entirely on this information for your health care needs. Ask your own doctor or health care provider any specific medical questions that you have. Further, is not a tool to be used in the case of an emergency. If an emergency arises, you should seek appropriate emergency medical services.

Pittsburgh, PA, USA |