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A multicenter prospective randomized study comparing the efficacy of escalating higher biphasic versus low biphasic energy defibrillations in patients presenting with cardiac arrest in the in-hospital environment

Authors Anantharaman V, Tay SY, Manning PG, Lim SH, Chua TSJ, Tiru M, Charles RA, Sudarshan V

Received 27 March 2016

Accepted for publication 18 May 2016

Published 13 January 2017 Volume 2017:9 Pages 9—17

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/OAEM.S109339

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Hans-Christoph Pape


Venkataraman Anantharaman,1 Seow Yian Tay,2 Peter George Manning,3 Swee Han Lim,1 Terrance Siang Jin Chua,4 Mohan Tiru,5 Rabind Antony Charles,1 Vidya Sudarshan1

1Department of Emergency Medicine, Singapore General Hospital, 2Department of Emergency Medicine, Tan Tock Seng Hospital, 3Emergency Medicine Department, National University Hospital, 4Department of Cardiology, National Heart Centre, 5Accident and Emergency Department, Changi General Hospital, Singapore

Background: Biphasic defibrillation has been practiced worldwide for >15 years. Yet, consensus does not exist on the best energy levels for optimal outcomes when used in patients with ventricular fibrillation (VF)/pulseless ventricular tachycardia (VT).
Methods: This prospective, randomized, controlled trial of 235 adult cardiac arrest patients with VF/VT was conducted in the emergency and cardiology departments. One group received low-energy (LE) shocks at 150–150–150 J and the other escalating higher-energy (HE) shocks at 200–300–360 J. If return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC) was not achieved by the third shock, LE patients crossed over to the HE arm and HE patients continued at 360 J. Primary end point was ROSC. Secondary end points were 24-hour, 7-day, and 30-day survival.
Results: Both groups were comparable for age, sex, cardiac risk factors, and duration of collapse and VF/VT. Of the 118 patients randomized to the LE group, 48 crossed over to the HE protocol, 24 for persistent VF, and 24 for recurrent VF. First-shock termination rates for HE and LE patients were 66.67% and 64.41%, respectively (P=0.78, confidence interval: 0.65–1.89). First-shock ROSC rates were 25.64% and 29.66%, respectively (P=0.56, confidence interval: 0.46–1.45). The 24-hour, 7-day, and 30-day survival rates were 85.71%, 74.29%, and 62.86% for first-shock ROSC LE patients and 70.00%, 50.00%, and 46.67% for first-shock ROSC HE patients, respectively. Conversion rates for further shocks at 200 J and 300 J were low, but increased to 38.95% at 360 J.
Conclusion: First-shock termination and ROSC rates were not significantly different between LE and HE biphasic defibrillation for cardiac arrest patients. Patients responded best at 150/200 J and at 360 J energy levels. For patients with VF/pulseless VT, consideration is needed to escalate quickly to HE shocks at 360 J if not successfully defibrillated with 150 or 200 J initially.

Keywords: defibrillation, sudden cardiac arrest, cardiopulmonary resuscitation, high-energy, low-energy

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