Improving Patient Selection for Refractory Out of Hospital Cardiac Arrest Treated with Extracorporeal Life Support

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Abstract

Background:

Despite recent management improvement, including Extracorporeal Life Support (ECLS), refractory out of hospital cardiac arrest (ROHCA) survival remains dramatically low.

Methods:

We assessed an innovative strategy (Out of hoSpital Cardiac ARrest–ExtraCorporeal Life Support—“OSCAR-ECLS”) to optimize access to ECLS of ROHCA patients and reduce the delay between recognition and ECLS implantation.

Methods:

This study, conducted in a tertiary teaching hospital, compared the survival and delay times of ROHCA patients treated by ECLS before and after OSCAR-ECLS implementation. This procedure included an early recognition of ROHCA 10 min after initiation of advanced cardiopulmonary resuscitation; the optimization of patient selection and reduction in time from collapse to ECLS initiation.

Results:

Fourteen patients before and 32 patients after OSCAR-ECLS implementation were identified between 2013 and 2016. Time to ECLS initiation was 99 (90–107) min before OSCAR-ECLS vs. 80 (65–94) min during the OSCAR-ECLS period (P = 0.0007), mostly due to a reduction in time spent on site: 48 (40.0–54.0) min vs. 24 (20.0–28.0) min (P = 0.0001). Survival at hospital discharge was 7% (1/14) before OSCAR-ECLS and 25% (8/32) during the OSCAR-ECLS period (P = 0.20). Only one patient survived with a Glasgow Pittsburgh Cerebral Performance Category (CPC) score = 1 before the OSCAR-ECLS procedure while during the OSCAR-ECLS procedure, eight patients (25%) survived, six with a CPC score = 1, one with a CPC score = 2, and one with a CPC score = 3.

Conclusions:

The use of a new paradigm of ROHCA dramatically shortened the time to ECLS initiation by reducing the time spent on site by more than 20 min. Survival improved from 7% to 25% after implementation of OSCAR-ECLS.

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