EEG in postanoxic coma: Prognostic and diagnostic value

Clin Neurophysiol. 2016 Apr;127(4):2047-55. doi: 10.1016/j.clinph.2016.02.002. Epub 2016 Feb 11.


Evolution of the EEG background pattern is a robust contributor to prediction of poor or good outcome of comatose patients after cardiac arrest. At 24h, persistent isoelectricity, low voltage activity, or burst-suppression with identical bursts predicts a poor outcome without false positives. Rapid recovery toward continuous patterns within 12h is strongly associated with a good neurological outcome. Predictive values are highest in the first 24h, despite the use of mild therapeutic hypothermia and sedative medication. Studies on reactivity or mismatch negativity have not included the EEG background pattern. Therefore, the additional predictive value of reactivity parameters remains unclear. Whether or not treatment of electrographic status epilepticus improves outcome is studied in the randomized multicenter Treatment of Electroencephalographic STatus epilepticus After cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (TELSTAR) trial (NCT02056236).

Keywords: EEG; Electrographic status epilepticus; Outcome prediction; Postanoxic coma; Postanoxic encephalopathy.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Coma / diagnosis*
  • Coma / epidemiology
  • Coma / physiopathology
  • Electroencephalography / trends*
  • Heart Arrest / diagnosis*
  • Heart Arrest / epidemiology
  • Heart Arrest / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Hypoxia-Ischemia, Brain / diagnosis*
  • Hypoxia-Ischemia, Brain / epidemiology
  • Hypoxia-Ischemia, Brain / physiopathology
  • Multicenter Studies as Topic / methods
  • Prognosis
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic / methods

Associated data