JOURNAL ARTICLE

[Thrombolysis in cardiopulmonary resuscitation]

F Spöhr, B W Böttiger
Hämostaseologie 2007, 27 (5): 356-9
18060246
The prognosis of patients suffering cardiac arrest is still poor. Until today, no drug therapy has shown to improve longterm survival after cardiac arrest. Thrombolysis has been shown to be an effective therapy in patients with acute myocardial infarction (AMI) or massive pulmonary embolism (PE). Since 50-70% of cardiac arrests are caused by AMI or massive PE, the combination of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and thrombolytic therapy appears to be sensible. As experimental studies have shown, thrombolytic therapy during CPR may not only be a causal treatment for coronary or pulmonary arterial obstruction by thrombi, but may also improve microcirculatory reperfusion after cardiac arrest. Although numerous small clinical studies have shown the efficacy of thrombolysis during CPR in selected patients, the generalized treatment of patients suffering cardiac arrest with thrombolytics can not be recommended based on current clinical evidence. According to the recent CPR guidelines, thrombolysis may be considered in cardiac arrest patients with suspected massive PE or as a so-called rescue therapy after unsuccessful conventional CPR in patients with a suspected thrombotic cause of cardiac arrest. The risk of severe bleeding complications following thrombolysis during CPR seems to be outweighed by the potential benefit of this therapy in selected patients.

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