Evaluation of the use of automatic external defibrillation in out-of-hospital cardiac arrest in Hong Kong

Resuscitation. 1999 Jul;41(2):113-9. doi: 10.1016/s0300-9572(99)00058-1.


A retrospective 6-month audit of out-of-hospital cardiac arrests in Hong Kong following the introduction of automatic external defibrillators is presented. During the 6-month period from 1 July 1995 to 31 December 1995, resuscitation was attempted on 754 patients. Of the 744 patients with cardiac arrest whose records were available, 53.6% had a witnessed arrest. Few cardiac arrest patients (8.9%) received bystander cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and the majority (80%) of arrests occurred at home. Six hundred and forty-three (86.4%) patients were declared dead on arrival at hospital or in the Accident and Emergency department; 89 (12%) died in hospital and only 12 (1.6%) were discharged alive. The average ambulance response interval (call receipt to arrival of ambulance at scene) was 6.42 min. The average arrest-to-first-shock interval was 23.77 min. Factors predicting survival included initial rhythm and arrest-to-first-shock interval. The survival rate of 1.6% is low by world standards. To improve the survival rates of people with out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, the arrest-to-call interval must be reduced and the frequency of bystander CPR assistance increased. Once these changes are in place, a beneficial effect from the use of pre-hospital defibrillation might be seen.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Distribution
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation / instrumentation
  • Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation / methods*
  • Child
  • Electric Countershock / methods*
  • Electric Countershock / mortality
  • Emergency Medical Services / methods*
  • Female
  • Heart Arrest / mortality
  • Heart Arrest / therapy*
  • Hong Kong
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sex Distribution
  • Survival Analysis
  • Survival Rate