Postresuscitative Intensive Care: Neuroprotective strategies after cardiac arrest

Wendy L. Wright, Romergryko G. Geocadin

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Cardiac arrest is a common disease in the United States, and many patients will die as a result of the neurological damage suffered during the anoxic period, or will live in a neurologically debilitated state. When cardiopulmonary-cerebral resuscitation results in the return of spontaneous circulation, intensive care is required to optimize neurological recovery. Such "brain-oriented" therapies include routine care, such as positioning and maintenance of volume status; optimization of cerebral perfusion, with the use of vasopressors if needed; management of increased intracranial pressure with agents such as hypertonic saline; assuring adequate oxygenation and avoiding hypercapnia; aggressive fever control; intensive glucose control, with the use of an insulin drip if needed; and management of seizures if they occur. To date, no neuroprotectant medications have been shown to improve neurological outcome. Induced moderate therapeutic hypothermia is utilized as a neuroprotective maneuver. Future treatment options and advanced monitoring techniques are also discussed. Further study to optimize neuroprotective strategies when treating patients who survive cardiac arrest is needed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)396-402
Number of pages7
JournalSeminars in neurology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Sep 2006


  • Cardiac arrest
  • Cardiopulmonary-cerebral resuscitation (CPCR)
  • Postresuscitation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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