RCP

Transesophageal Echocardiography During Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation Is Associated With Shorter Compression Pauses Compared With Transthoracic Echocardiography

James Fair III, MDjames.fair@hsc.utah.edu

Correspondence information about the author MD James Fair

Study objective

Point-of-care ultrasonography provides diagnostic information in addition to visual pulse checks during cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). The most commonly used modality, transthoracic echocardiography, has unfortunately been repeatedly associated with prolonged pauses in chest compressions, which correlate with worsened neurologic outcomes. Unlike transthoracic echocardiography, transesophageal echocardiography does not require cessation of compressions for adequate imaging and provides the diagnostic benefit of point-of-care ultrasonography. To assess a benefit of transesophageal echocardiography, we compare the duration of chest compression pauses between transesophageal echocardiography, transthoracic echocardiography, and manual pulse checks on video recordings of cardiac arrest resuscitations.

Methods

We analyzed 139 pulse check CPR pauses among 25 patients during cardiac arrest.

Results

Transesophageal echocardiography provided the shortest mean pulse check duration (9 seconds [95% confidence interval {CI} 5 to 12 seconds]). Mean pulse check duration with transthoracic echocardiography was 19 seconds (95% CI 16 to 22 seconds), and it was 11 seconds (95% CI 8 to 14 seconds) with manual checks. Intraclass correlation coefficient between abstractors for a portion of individual and average times was 0.99 and 0.99, respectively (P<.001 for both).

Conclusion

Our study suggests that pulse check times with transesophageal echocardiography are shorter versus with transthoracic echocardiography for ED point-of-care ultrasonography during cardiac arrest resuscitations, and further emphasizes the need for careful attention to compression pause duration when using transthoracic echocardiography for point-of-care ultrasonography during ED cardiac arrest resuscitations.

 

 

 

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