State-of-the-art paper: Therapeutic hypothermia in out of hospital cardiac arrest survivors

Catheter Cardiovasc Interv. 2013 Oct 1;82(4):E482-90. doi: 10.1002/ccd.24914. Epub 2013 Apr 8.


Out of hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) is associated with an extremely poor survival rate, with mortality in most cases being related to neurological injury. Among patients who experience return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC), therapeutic hypothermia (TH) is the only proven intervention shown to reduce mortality and improve neurological outcome. First described in 1958, the field of TH has rapidly evolved in recent years. While recent technological advances in TH will likely improve outcomes in OHCA survivors, several fundamental questions remain to be answered including the optimal speed of cooling, which patients benefit from an early invasive strategy, and whether technological advances will facilitate application of TH in the field. An increased awareness and understanding of TH strategies, devices, monitoring, techniques, and complications will allow for a more widespread adoption of this important treatment modality.

Keywords: anoxic brain injury; out-of-hospital cardiac arrest; post cardiac arrest syndrome; return of spontaneous circulation; sudden cardiac death.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Blood Circulation
  • Humans
  • Hypothermia, Induced* / adverse effects
  • Hypothermia, Induced* / mortality
  • Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest / diagnosis
  • Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest / mortality
  • Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest / physiopathology
  • Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest / therapy*
  • Recovery of Function
  • Time Factors
  • Treatment Outcome