Expedited transfer to a cardiac arrest centre for non-ST-elevation out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (ARREST): a UK prospective, multicentre, parallel, randomised clinical trial

Lancet. 2023 Oct 14;402(10410):1329-1337. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(23)01351-X. Epub 2023 Aug 27.


Background: The International Liaison Committee on Resuscitation has called for a randomised trial of delivery to a cardiac arrest centre. We aimed to assess whether expedited delivery to a cardiac arrest centre compared with current standard of care following resuscitated cardiac arrest reduces deaths.

Methods: ARREST is a prospective, parallel, multicentre, open-label, randomised superiority trial. Patients (aged ≥18 years) with return of spontaneous circulation following out-of-hospital cardiac arrest without ST elevation were randomly assigned (1:1) at the scene of their cardiac arrest by London Ambulance Service staff using a secure online randomisation system to expedited delivery to the cardiac catheter laboratory at one of seven cardiac arrest centres or standard of care with delivery to the geographically closest emergency department at one of 32 hospitals in London, UK. Masking of the ambulance staff who delivered the interventions and those reporting treatment outcomes in hospital was not possible. The primary outcome was all-cause mortality at 30 days, analysed in the intention-to-treat (ITT) population excluding those with unknown mortality status. Safety outcomes were analysed in the ITT population. The trial was prospectively registered with the International Standard Randomised Controlled Trials Registry, 96585404.

Findings: Between Jan 15, 2018, and Dec 1, 2022, 862 patients were enrolled, of whom 431 (50%) were randomly assigned to a cardiac arrest centre and 431 (50%) to standard care. 20 participants withdrew from the cardiac arrest centre group and 19 from the standard care group, due to lack of consent or unknown mortality status, leaving 411 participants in the cardiac arrest centre group and 412 in the standard care group for the primary analysis. Of 822 participants for whom data were available, 560 (68%) were male and 262 (32%) were female. The primary endpoint of 30-day mortality occurred in 258 (63%) of 411 participants in the cardiac arrest centre group and in 258 (63%) of 412 in the standard care group (unadjusted risk ratio for survival 1·00, 95% CI 0·90-1·11; p=0·96). Eight (2%) of 414 patients in the cardiac arrest centre group and three (1%) of 413 in the standard care group had serious adverse events, none of which were deemed related to the trial intervention.

Interpretation: In adult patients without ST elevation, transfer to a cardiac arrest centre following resuscitated cardiac arrest in the community did not reduce deaths.

Funding: British Heart Foundation.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • London / epidemiology
  • Male
  • Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest* / therapy
  • Prospective Studies
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • ST Elevation Myocardial Infarction*
  • Treatment Outcome