The low flow states and limited coronary perfusion provided by conventional cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) have prompted investigations into alternative, more invasive, methods of resuscitation. Previous case reports and limited animal evidence have suggested that the intra-aortic balloon pump (IABP) may have a role in resuscitation. We used a canine cardiac arrest model to study the hemodynamic effects of the IABP during closed-chest CPR. A sensor attached to the chest plate of a Thumper was used to time a Datascope Model 3520 ventricular assist console such that the balloon inflated on the upstroke and deflated on the downstroke of the Thumper. There was no increase in systolic blood pressure with the balloon pump. Diastolic blood pressure and coronary perfusion pressure were significantly higher with the IABP. Circulation times were shorter and end-tidal CO2 was higher with the IABP. It was concluded that the IABP improves hemodynamic parameters during experimental cardiac arrest.