Introduction: The decision as to whether to end resuscitation for pre-hospital cardiac arrest (CA) patients in the field or in the emergency department (ED) is commonly made based upon standard criteria. We studied the reliability of several easily determined criteria as predictors of resuscitation outcomes in a population of adults in CA transported to the ED. Methods: A retrospective database and chart analysis was completed for patients arriving to a tertiary ED in cardiac arrest, between 2010 and 2014. Patients were excluded if aged under 19. Multiple data were abstracted from charts using a standardized form. Regression analysis was used to compare criteria that predicted return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC) and survival to hospital admission (SHA). Results: 264 patients met the study inclusion criteria. Logistic regression was used to identify predictors of ROSC and SHA. The criteria that emerged as significant predictors for ROSC included; longer ED resuscitation time (Odds ratio 1.11 (1.06- 1.18)), witnessed arrest (Odds ratio 9.43 (2.58- 53.0)) and having an initial cardiac rhythm of Pulseless Electrical Activity (Odds Ratio 3.23 (1.07-9.811)) over Asystole. Receiving point of care ultrasound (PoCUS; Odds ratio 0.22 (0.07-0.69)); and having an initial cardiac rhythm of Pulseless Electrical Activity (Odds Ratio 4.10 (1.43-11.88)) were the significant predictors for SHA. Longer times for ED resuscitation was close to reaching significance for predicting SHA Conclusion: Our results suggest that both fixed and adaptable factors, including increasing resuscitation time, and PoCUS use in the ED were important independent predictors of successful resuscitation. Several commonly used criteria were unreliable predictors.
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