Prognosis of Hypoxic Brain Injury Post-cardiac Arrest Pharmacological and Non-Pharmacological Interventions

Publication Date

Fall 2010


Nursing (B.S.N.)

Primary Subject Area

Health Sciences, Nursing; Health Sciences, Pharmacology




Cardiac arrest is a condition in which the heart abruptly ceases to beat and stops supplying blood to the tissues and vital organs of the body. In order to survive cardiac arrest with good neurological function there must be immediate cardiopulmonary resuscitation, advanced cardiac life support, and quintessential post-cardiac arrest care. However, much emphasis and attention has been given to cardiopulmonary resuscitation and advanced cardiac life support with little consideration to post-cardiac arrest care. Unfortunately, even amidst all the interventions, hypoxic brain injury has been shown by various studies to occur after cardiac arrest. Hypoxic brain degeneration is part of an umbrella of pathologic condition known as Post-cardiac Arrest Syndrome. This is a complex pathological process that comprises post-cardiac arrest brain injury, myocardial dysfunction, systemic ischemia, and persistent precipitating pathology. Many prominent research studies have revealed the pertinent role that post-cardiac arrest care plays in enhancing patient neurological prognosis. The primary focus of post-cardiac arrest intervention is geared toward improving possible cerebral edema, post-ischemic neurodegeneration and impaired cerebrovascular auto regulation. The thesis therefore strives to analyze the effectiveness of present modalities within the chain of survival and also to unveil novel improvements in this field of study, which comprise both pharmacological and non-pharmacological interventions.

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