The cardiac arrest survival rate has improved since the emergency ambulance service manned by specially trained paramedical personnel and doctors was introduced in Iceland. As the response time has been reduced, specific resuscitation measures can be applied sooner.
The impact of prehospital care after the return of spontaneous circulation in out-of-hospital cardiac arrest patients is not known. This study describes adherence to the resuscitation guidelines, factors associated with poor adherence and possible impact of prehospital postresuscitation care on the outcome of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest.
One hundred and fifty-seven Finnish out-of-hospital cardiac arrest patients hospitalized during 1 year, were analyzed retrospectively. Patient and arrest characteristics, prehospital postresuscitation care and survival to hospital discharge were analyzed using multivariate logistic regression.
Forty percent of the patients received care accordant with the guidelines. Male sex (P=0.045), witnessed arrest (P=0.031), initial ventricular fibrillation/ventricular tachycardia rhythm (P=0.007) and the presence of an emergency physician (P=0.017) were associated with care in line with the current guidelines. In multivariate logistic regression analysis, age over median (odds ratio=3.6, 95% confidence interval 1.5-8.6), nonventricular fibrillation/ventricular tachycardia initial rhythm (odds ratio=4.0, 95% confidence interval 1.6-9.8), administration of adrenaline (odds ratio=7.0, 95% confidence interval 2.3-21.4) and unsatisfactory prehospital postresuscitation care (odds ratio=2.5, 95% confidence interval 1.1-6.3) were associated with a failure to survive up to hospital discharge.
Less than 50% of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest patients received prehospital postresuscitation care compatible with the current guidelines. Markers of poor prognosis were associated with unsatisfactory care, which in turn was more frequent among the patients who did not survive to hospital discharge. The importance of the guidelines should be highlighted in the future.
STUDY HYPOTHESIS: Tracheal intubation should improve the quality of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) by enabling adequate ventilation without pauses in external chest compressions. METHODS: Out-of-hospital cardiac arrests of all causes were sampled in this non-randomized, observational study of advanced cardiac life support in three ambulance services (Akershus, London and Stockholm). Prototype defibrillators (Heartstart 4000SP, Philips Medical Systems, Andover, MA, USA and Laerdal Medical AS, Stavanger, Norway) registered all chest compressions via an extra chest pad with an accelerometer mounted over the lower part of sternum and ventilations from changes in transthoracic impedance between the standard defibrillator pads. The quality of CPR was analyzed off-line for 119 episodes. Numbers and differences are given as mean +/- S.D. and differences as mean and 95% confidence intervals. RESULTS: Chest compressions were not given in cardiac arrest for 61 +/- 20% of the time before intubation compared to 41 +/- 18% after intubation (difference: 20% (16-24%)). Compressions and ventilations per minute increased from 47 +/- 25 to 71 +/- 23 (difference: 24 (19, 29)) and 5.6 +/- 3.7 to 14 +/- 5.0 (difference: 8.7 (7.6, 9.8)) respectively. Four cases of unrecognized oesophageal intubation (3%) were suspected from the disappearance of ventilation induced changes in thoracic impedance after intubation. CONCLUSION: The quality of CPR improved after tracheal intubation, but the fraction of time without blood flow was still high and not according to international guidelines. On-line analysis of thoracic impedance might be a practicable aid to avoid unrecognized oesophageal intubation, but this area needs further research.
The adverse event (AE) profile of lay volunteer CPR and public access defibrillation (PAD) programs is unknown. We undertook to investigate the frequency, severity, and type of AE's occurring in widespread PAD implementation.
A randomized-controlled clinical trial.
One thousand two hundred and sixty public and residential facilities in the US and Canada.
On-site, volunteer, lay personnel trained in CPR only compared to CPR plus automated external defibrillators (AEDs).
Persons experiencing possible cardiac arrest receiving lay volunteer first response with CPR+AED compared with CPR alone.
An AE is defined as an event of significance that caused, or had the potential to cause, harm to a patient or volunteer, or a criminal act. AE data were collected prospectively.
Twenty thousand three hundred and ninety six lay volunteers were trained in either CPR or CPR+AED. One thousand seven hundred and sixteen AEDs were placed in units randomized to the AED arm. There were 26,389 exposure months. Only 36 AE's were reported. There were two patient-related AEs: both patients experienced rib fractures. There were seven volunteer-related AE's: one had a muscle pull, four experienced significant emotional distress and two reported pressure by their employee to participate. There were 27 AED-related AEs: 17 episodes of theft involving 20 devices, three involved AEDs that were placed in locations inaccessible to the volunteer, four AEDs had mechanical problems not affecting patient safety, and three devices were improperly maintained by the facility. There were no inappropriate shocks and no failures to shock when indicated (95% upper bound for probability of inappropriate shock or failure to shock = 0.0012).
AED use following widespread training of lay-persons in CPR and AED is generally safe for the volunteer and the patient. Lay volunteers may report significant, usually transient, emotional stress following response to a potential cardiac arrest. Within the context of this prospective, randomized multi-center study, AEDs have an exceptionally high safety profile when used by trained lay responders.
To determine whether age is associated with the outcome of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) in the coronary care unit (CCU).
Retrospective chart review.
The coronary care units of two Canadian tertiary care teaching hospitals.
Two hundred sixty-four coronary care unit patients undergoing cardiopulmonary resuscitation between January 1, 1985 and June 30, 1992.
There was no significant difference in survival to discharge after CPR between patients less than 70 years of age (17.0%) and patients 70 years of age and older (17.2%) (odds ratio = 0.99; 95% confidence interval = 0.46, 1.80). Patients 70 years of age and older who survived to discharge after CPR had significantly greater lengths of stay (28.1 vs 19.3 days, P = .008).
Age was not associated with a difference in survival to discharge after CPR in the CCU, although a clinically significant difference could not be excluded because of limited power.
Tracheal intubation (ETI) is considered the method of choice for securing the airway and for providing effective ventilation during cardiac arrest. However, ETI requires skills which are difficult to maintain especially if practised infrequently. The laryngeal tube (LT) has been successfully tested and used in anaesthesia and in simulated cardiac arrest in manikins. To compare the initiation and success of ventilation with the LT, ETI and bag-valve mask (BVM) in a cardiac arrest scenario, 60 fire-fighter emergency medical technician (EMT) students formed teams of two rescuers at random and were allocated to use these devices. We found that the teams using the LT were able to initiate ventilation more rapidly than those performing ETI (P