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Resuscitation. 2012 May;83(5):596-601. doi: 10.1016/j.resuscitation.2011.11.019. Epub 2011 Nov 29.

The beneficial effect of mild therapeutic hypothermia depends on the time of complete circulatory standstill in patients with cardiac arrest.

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1
Department of Emergency Medicine, Medical University of Vienna, Austria.

Abstract

AIM:

Mild therapeutic hypothermia has shown to improve long-time survival as well as favorable functional outcome after cardiac arrest. Animal models suggest that ischemic durations beyond 8 min results in progressively worse neurologic deficits. Based on these considerations, it would be obvious that cardiac arrest survivors would benefit most from mild therapeutic hypothermia if they have reached a complete circulatory standstill of more than 8 min.

METHODS:

In this retrospective cohort study we included cardiac arrest survivors of 18 years of age or older suffering a witnessed out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, which remain comatose after restoration of spontaneous circulation. Data were collected from 1992 to 2010. We investigated the interaction of 'no-flow' time on the association between post arrest mild therapeutic hypothermia and good neurological outcome. 'No-flow' time was categorized into time quartiles (0, 1-2, 3-8, >8 min).

RESULTS:

One thousand-two-hundred patients were analyzed. Hypothermia was induced in 598 patients. In spite of showing a statistically significant improvement in favorable neurologic outcome in all patients treated with mild therapeutic hypothermia (odds ratio [OR]: 1.49; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.14-1.93) this effect varies with 'no-flow' time. The effect is significant in patients with 'no-flow' times of more than 2 min (OR: 2.72; CI: 1.35-5.48) with the maximum benefit in those with 'no-flow' times beyond 8 min (OR: 6.15; CI: 2.23-16.99).

CONCLUSION:

The beneficial effect of mild therapeutic hypothermia increases with cumulative time of complete circulatory standstill in patients with witnessed out-of-hospital cardiac arrest.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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