Insights

Measuring Cerebral Perfusion During CPR

Cardiac arrest is a major health issue with poor survival outcomes. We have traditionally focused on resuscitating the heart (e.g. return of spontaneous circulation) but not the brain and approximately two-thirds of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest patients who survive to hospital admission die from brain injury. The brain is especially vulnerable to ischemia and brain injury is the final cause of death and disability for many cardiac arrest patients. There is currently no standard method to measure cerebral perfusion and oxygenation. Near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) is non-invasive and can measure cerebral oxygenation. This may allow focused resuscitation of the brain during CPR and help optimize cardiac arrest resuscitation to improve overall patient outcomes.