Background: Donation after circulatory death (DCD) is a recently accepted source for solid organ donation in Canada. Standards for circulatory death vary within and between countries and little is known about neurologic function at the time of circulatory death. This pilot study will explore the electrical physiology of the brain during the dying process following withdrawal of life support and at the time of declaration of circulatory death. Methods: This single-centre pilot study will build on preliminary data from the DDePICt (Death Determination Practices in Intensive Care) research program. With institutional approval and signed consent from the substitute decision maker, participants will undergo continuous 10-20 EEG (cEEG) monitoring in addition to monitoring vital signs during the dying process and for 30 minutes after the declaration of death. Results: Preliminary results including cEEG, blood pressure with arterial wave forms, EKG activity and oxygen saturations are currently under analysis and will be presented. Conclusions: It is feasible to study neurologic function during withdrawal of life support and these results will allow us to further understand the electrical activity of the brain during the dying process.
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