Skip to main content
×
Home

When is a Cardiac Arrest Non-Cardiac?

  • Ryan M. Carter (a1) and David C. Cone (a1)
Abstract
Abstract Introduction

While the overall survival rate for out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) is low, ranging from 5%-10%, several characteristics have been shown to decrease mortality, such as presence of bystander cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), witnessed vs unwitnessed events, and favorable initial rhythm (VF/VT). More recently, studies have shown that modified CPR algorithms, such as chest-compression only or cardio-cerebral resuscitation, can further increase survival rates in OHCA. Most of these studies have included only OHCA patients with “presumed cardiac etiology,” on the assumption that airway management is of lesser impact than chest compressions in these patients. However, prehospital personnel often lack objective and consistent criteria to assess whether an OHCA is of cardiac or non-cardiac etiology.

Hypothesis/Problem

The relative proportions of cardiac vs non-cardiac etiology in published data sets of OHCA in the peer-reviewed literature were examined in order to assess the variability of prehospital clinical etiology assessment.

Methods

A Medline (US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health; Bethesda, Maryland USA) search was performed using the subject headings “OHCA” and “Emergency Medical Services” (EMS). Studies were included if they reported prevalence of cardiac etiology among OHCA in the entire patient sample, or in all arms of a comparison study. Studies that either did not report etiology of OHCA, or that excluded all cardiac or non-cardiac etiologies prior to reporting clinical data, were excluded.

Results

Twenty-four studies were identified, containing 27 datasets of OHCA which reported the prevalence of presumed cardiac vs non-cardiac etiology. These 27 datasets were drawn from 15 different countries. The prevalence of cardiac etiology among OHCA ranged from 50% to 91%. No obvious patterns were found regarding database size, year of publication, or global region (continent) of origin.

Conclusions:

There exists significant variation in published rates of cardiac etiology among OHCAs. While some of this variation likely reflects different actual rates of cardiac etiologies in the sampled populations, varying definitions of cardiac etiology among prehospital personnel or varying implementation of existing definitions may also play a role. Different proportions of cardiac vs non-cardiac etiology of OHCA in a sample could result in entirely different interpretations of data. A more specific consensus definition of cardiac etiology than that which currently exists in the Utstein template may provide better guidance to prehospital personnel and EMS researchers in the future.

Carter RM , Cone DC . When is a Cardiac Arrest Non-Cardiac? Prehosp Disaster Med. 2017;32(5):523527.

Copyright
Corresponding author
Correspondence: Ryan M. Carter, MD, MPH, MPP Yale Emergency Medicine Suite 260, 464 Congress Ave New Haven, Connecticut 06519 USA E-mail: ryan.carter.ems@yale.edu
Footnotes
Hide All

Conflicts of interest/funding: The authors have no financial disclosures or conflicts of interest to report. No funding was received for this study.

Footnotes
References
Hide All
1. Jacobs I, Nadkarni V, Bahr J, et al. Cardiac arrest and cardiopulmonary resuscitation outcome reports: update and simplification of the Utstein templates for resuscitation registries. A statement for healthcare professionals from a task force of the international liaison committee on resuscitation (American Heart Association, European Resuscitation Council, Australian Resuscitation Council, New Zealand Resuscitation Council, Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, InterAmerican Heart Foundation, Resuscitation Council of Southern Africa). Resuscitation. 2004;63(3):233-249.
2. Hagihara A, Hasegawa M, Abe T, Nagata T, Wakata Y, Miyazaki S. Prehospital epinephrine use and survival among patients with out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. JAMA. 2012;307(11):1161-1168.
3. Eisenberg MS, Cummins RO, Larsen MP. Numerators, denominators, and survival rates: reporting survival from out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. Am J Emerg Med. 1991;9(6):544-546.
4. Koscik C, Pinawin A, McGovern H, et al. Rapid epinephrine administration improves early outcomes in out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. Resuscitation. 2013;84(7):915-920.
5. Bobrow BJ, Clark LL, Ewy GA, et al. Minimally interrupted cardiac resuscitation by emergency medical services for out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. JAMA. 2008;299(10):1158-1165.
6. Cummins RO, Chamberlain DA, Abramson NS, et al. Recommended guidelines for uniform reporting of data from out-of-hospital cardiac arrest: the Utstein style. A statement for health professionals from a task force of the American Heart Association, the European Resuscitation Council, the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, and the Australian Resuscitation Council. Circulation. 1991;84(2):960-975.
7. Sayre MR, Cantrell SA, White LJ, et al. Impact of the 2005 American Heart Association cardiopulmonary resuscitation and emergency cardiovascular care guidelines on out-of-hospital cardiac arrest survival. Prehosp Emerg Care. 2009;13(4):469-477.
8. Laurent G, Saal S, Amarouch MY, et al. Multifocal ectopic Purkinje-related premature contractions: a new SCN5A-related cardiac channelopathy. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2012;60(2):144-156.
9. Otway R, Vandenberg JI, Fatkin D. Atrial fibrillation--a new cardiac channelopathy. Heart Lung Circ. 2007;16(5):356-360.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Prehospital and Disaster Medicine
  • ISSN: 1049-023X
  • EISSN: 1945-1938
  • URL: /core/journals/prehospital-and-disaster-medicine
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Keywords:

Metrics

Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 1
Total number of PDF views: 69 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 345 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between 2nd May 2017 - 14th December 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.