Cardiac arrest in COVID-19: characteristics and outcomes of in- and out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. A report from the Swedish Registry for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation

Eur Heart J. 2021 Feb 5;ehaa1067. doi: 10.1093/eurheartj/ehaa1067. Online ahead of print.

Abstract

Aim: To study the characteristics and outcome among cardiac arrest cases with COVID-19 and differences between the pre-pandemic and the pandemic period in out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) and in-hospital cardiac arrest (IHCA).

Method and results: We included all patients reported to the Swedish Registry for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation from 1 January to 20 July 2020. We defined 16 March 2020 as the start of the pandemic. We assessed overall and 30-day mortality using Cox regression and logistic regression, respectively. We studied 1946 cases of OHCA and 1080 cases of IHCA during the entire period. During the pandemic, 88 (10.0%) of OHCAs and 72 (16.1%) of IHCAs had ongoing COVID-19. With regards to OHCA during the pandemic, the odds ratio for 30-day mortality in COVID-19-positive cases, compared with COVID-19-negative cases, was 3.40 [95% confidence interval (CI) 1.31-11.64]; the corresponding hazard ratio was 1.45 (95% CI 1.13-1.85). Adjusted 30-day survival was 4.7% for patients with COVID-19, 9.8% for patients without COVID-19, and 7.6% in the pre-pandemic period. With regards to IHCA during the pandemic, the odds ratio for COVID-19-positive cases, compared with COVID-19-negative cases, was 2.27 (95% CI 1.27-4.24); the corresponding hazard ratio was 1.48 (95% CI 1.09-2.01). Adjusted 30-day survival was 23.1% in COVID-19-positive cases, 39.5% in patients without COVID-19, and 36.4% in the pre-pandemic period.

Conclusion: During the pandemic phase, COVID-19 was involved in at least 10% of all OHCAs and 16% of IHCAs, and, among COVID-19 cases, 30-day mortality was increased 3.4-fold in OHCA and 2.3-fold in IHCA.

Keywords: COVID-19; Cardiac arrest.