Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest in Acute Myocardial Infarction and STEMI Networks

DOI: 10.1515/jccm-2016-0007

Out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) remains associated with a poor prognosis, with a survival rate of approximately 10% [1]. Only 40% of patients presenting with OHCA are successfully resuscitated, and only 25% of them survive to hospital discharge [1].
In many cases of OHCA associated with acute myocardial infarction, the cardiac arrest is caused by ventricular fibrillation, occurring during the first hours after the onset of symptoms, and before the patient being admitted to hospital [2]. In these critical cases, implementation of specific protocols and dedicated networks are crucial for providing effective advanced cardiac life support.
Several treatment modalities have been proposed to improve outcomes in the post-resuscitation period. One such measure is induced therapeutic hypothermia, consisting of administering cooling infusions to cool the patient down to 32-34⁰C, and maintaining this for 12-24 hours. Evidence shows that when initiated promptly, cooling improves neurological outcomes in survivors of OHCA [3,4]. However, there is no clear evidence that hypothermia would lead to a significant reduction in mortality in these patients. Current guidelines recommend early therapeutic hypothermia as a class Ib indication, in the post-resuscitation phase, after cardiac arrest in patients who are comatose or deeply sedated [2]. [More]

Full text: PDF