Long-Term Treatment for Cardiac Arrest

Updated:Jul 28,2011

Doctor And nurse Talking To Patient With LazptopWhile it's estimated that more than 95 percent of cardiac arrest victims die before reaching the hospital, death from sudden cardiac arrest is not inevitable.

Survivors of sudden cardiac arrest may face a variety of complex medical issues known as Post-Cardiac Arrest Syndrome (PCAS):

PCAS-Related Conditions

  • Can begin hours to days after cardiac arrest.
  • Too much or too little oxygen delivered during initial treatment can affect outcome.
  • Fever, increased blood sugar levels (hyperglycemia) and seizures can affect severity of brain injury and outcome.
  • Signs include coma, seizures, varying degrees of cognitive dysfunction from memory deficits to persistent vegetative state, movement impairments and brain death.

All of these conditions must be monitored, treated and managed by the survivor's healthcare team.

The treatment plan for Post-Cardiac Arrest Syndrome varies from patient to patient depending on their level of consciousness and other factors. Likewise, several variables impact the prognosis for cardiac arrest survivors.

Clinical Trials

Clinical trials are scientific studies that determine if a possible new medical advance can help people and whether it has harmful side effects. Find answers to common questions about clinical trials in our Guide to Understanding Clinical Trials.

"This content was last reviewed on 07/12/2011."