Longer CPR efforts may improve survival chances

Health Care, Medicine Comments Off

A new study published online Tuesday in The Lancet looked into the duration of cardiopulmonary resuscitation in hospitals. The study suggests that many doctors may be giving up too soon in their efforts to resuscitate their patients.

The study found that patients have a better chance of surviving in hospitals that persist with CPR for just nine minutes longer, on average, than hospitals where efforts are halted earlier.

The findings challenge conventional medical thinking, which holds that prolonged resuscitation for hospitalized patients is usually futile because when patients do survive, they often suffer permanent neurological damage.

Patients who survived prolonged CPR and left the hospital fared as well as those who were quickly resuscitated.

The findings suggest that prolonging resuscitation efforts by 10 or 15 minutes might improve outcomes.

On average, hospitals spent 20 minutes on attempted resuscitation before a patient was declared dead. But hospitals that tried longest (those whose efforts averaged 25 minutes) had a 12-percent higher chance of patient response than those whose efforts (average 16 minutes) were shortest.