- Highlights from the 14th annual Complex Cardiovascular Therapeutics: Advanced Endovascular and Coronary Intervention Global Summit (C3), Hilton Bonnet Creek, Orlando, FL, US, 17–20 June 2018 — Focus on managing cardiac arrest.
Out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) is the leading cause of death in Europe and the United States. Guidelines advocate immediate angiography and percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI), when indicated, in resuscitated OHCA patients with electrocardiogram (ECG) evidence of ST-elevation myocardial infarction (STEMI).1
However, the benefit of early angiography in patients with OHCA without ST-elevation on their ECG, post-resuscitation, is less clear. Several studies (including COACT [Coronary angiography after cardiac arrest],2 PEARL [Early Coronary Angiography Versus Delayed Coronary Angiography; NCT02387398], ACCESS [ACCESS to the Cardiac Cath Lab in Patients Without STEMI Resuscitated From Out-of-hospital VT/VF Cardiac Arrest; NCT03119571], TOMAHAWK [Immediate Unselected Coronary Angiography Versus Delayed Triage in Survivors of Out-of-hospital Cardiac Arrest Without ST-segment Elevation; NCT02750462], DISCO [Direct or Subacute Coronary Angiography for Out-of-hospital Cardiac Arrest; NCT02309151]) are ongoing in the investigation of early angiography and PCI in non-STEMI patients. A recent study has shown that, in these patients, 33% had a culprit vessel identified, and of this subset, 69% had an occluded vessel; overall nearly a quarter of patients with non-STEMI and OHCA had an occluded culprit vessel.3 Currently, there is support for early angiography in these patients.3 However, patients with non-shockable rhythms have worse outcomes and may not benefit as much from early angiography as patients with shockable rhythms.4,5 It was notable that up to 25% of non-STEMI, non-shockable patients still underwent PCI.5
There is an ongoing interesting question of risk of acute stent thrombosis (ST), post PCI or in patients treated with therapeutic temperature management (TTM). Primary PCI is associated with elevated ST, although this can be mitigated to some degree with prolonged bivalirudin infusion at the PCI dose, although not at reduced dose.6 There appears to be no elevated ST risk associated with TTM.7,8 Evidence was presented to support use of dual antiplatelet therapy, including P2Y12 inhibitors, in resuscitated patients with OHCA at risk of post-PCI ST. Beyond clopidogrel therapy, ticagrelor and prasugrel may offer additional benefits, and ticagrelor has been associated with a lower rate of ST compared with clopidogrel.9
The benefits of mechanical cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) in the catheterisation laboratory were presented, given that prolonged cardiac arrest in this environment is not an uncommon occurrence. The first priority with CPR is to restore blood circulation for brain function – mechanical chest compressions can stabilise circulation quickly and allow for PCI and supporting interventions. It was suggested that with mechanical chest compression, post PCI, the following treatment strategies should be considered:
Advantages of mechanical compression for the care team in the catheterisation laboratory include: less fatigue and uninterrupted chest compressions; less radiation exposure; less crowding around the table, allowing for a focus on PCI; and a better quality of chest compression, with improved depth, rate and release of compressions compared with physician CPR.
There were presentations and debate around the evolving role of the catheterisation laboratory, and a proposal for a paradigm shift in the management of OHCA. It was proposed that the cardiac catheterisation laboratory could be the primary resuscitation bay, taking advantage of highly trained teams for the rapid initiation of advanced haemodynamic support and the immediate ability to treat reversible aetiologies including coronary disease, tamponade and pulmonary embolism. The benefits of this approach were described in a study showing that 43% of patients who continued resuscitation in the catheterisation laboratory were discharged alive and with good cerebral performance, compared with 15% in a historical comparator cohort.12
Despite the benefits of treatment in the catheterisation laboratory for many patients with OHCA, there are some patients for whom this approach yields little advantage. With a view to optimised treatment and use of resources, it was suggested that patients with multiple unfavourable factors should not automatically be treated in the catheterisation laboratory. These factors for a poor prognosis include:
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