Sudden unresponsive patient with normal vital signs: what is going on?

Lisa Smit, Kelly A Foks, Jeannette Hofmeijer, Mathieu van der Jagt
Current Opinion in Critical Care 2019, 25 (6): 653-660

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: To summarize the differential diagnosis and diagnostic approach of sudden unresponsiveness with normal vital signs in various settings, including the ICU.

RECENT FINDINGS: Sudden unresponsiveness may be either transient or persistent, and may result from primary brain diseases or nonstructural systemic conditions. Life-threatening causes should always be discriminated from those more benign. Regional epidemiology, for example regarding intoxications, and evolving therapeutic management, for example for ischemic stroke, should always be taken into account for optimal opportunity for rapid diagnosis and best management.

SUMMARY: Sudden unresponsiveness with normal vital signs should trigger immediate and focused diagnostic evaluation to find or exclude those conditions requiring urgent, and possibly life-saving, management.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Trending Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"