Abstract 19965: Emergency Medical Technicians Are Often Consulted on Termination of Resuscitation, and Will Terminate Resuscitation Based on Controversial Single Factors
Introduction: Many out-of-hospital cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) attempts have to be terminated. Previous studies have investigated knowledge on abandoning resuscitation among physicians. In the prehospital setting emergency medical technicians (EMTs) may be involved in the decision on abandoning CPR but this is sparsely investigated.
Aim: To investigate if EMTs are involved in termination of CPR, their self-assessed competence and knowledge of guidelines on termination of CPR according to European Resuscitation Council guidelines 2015. In addition, to evaluate single factors that according to an EMT should lead to termination of CPR.
Methods: This was a pilot-study including EMTs from a Danish Emergency Medical Service. Data was collected using a structured questionnaire. All responses were collected anonymously.
Results: In total, 50 EMTs (male: 88%, median age: 38, response rate: 100%) participated. Median clinical experience was 12 (IQR: 6-22) years. All EMTs had performed resuscitation (median time since last resuscitation attempt: 1 (IQR: 0.5-2.8) month). Overall, 68% of EMTs had been consulted on termination of CPR, 74% felt it was important to be consulted, and 74% felt competent in deciding when to abandon CPR. Several EMTs (40%) had experienced a physician terminating CPR earlier than the EMT felt was correct. The majority of EMTs (94%) did not know ERC guidelines on termination of CPR. EMTs would abandon CPR based on the following single factors: unwitnessed cardiac arrest (12%), witnessed cardiac arrest without bystander CPR within 10 minutes (30%), age above 80 years (20%), age above 90 years (62%), living at a nursing home (62%), known cancer (24%) and absence of pupillary light reflex (54%) during resuscitation.
Conclusion: The majority of EMTs have been consulted on termination of CPR. They feel competent in deciding when to abandon CPR, but do not know the ERC guidelines on termination of CPR. Several EMTs would terminate CPR based on controversial single factors.
Author Disclosures: T. Mygind-Klausen: None. K. G. Lauridsen: None. H. Bødker: None. B. Løfgren: None.
- © 2016 by American Heart Association, Inc.