A patient in the peri-arrest period—in other words, the “crashing” patient—can have an opportunity for significant improvement in outcomes compared with a patient in cardiac arrest. The session “The Crashing Patient: Pearls for the Pre- and Post-Arrest Period” will present some critical considerations and interventions emergency physicians can make with patients in the pre- and post-cardiac arrest period.
Patients in the peri-arrest period “are high-risk patients who have either survived their immediate arrests or are at greater risk for arrest based on their clinical condition. Recognition is critical to aligning resources for these patients to assure the best chance at survival and meaningful recovery,” said presenter Peter M. DeBlieux, MD, FACEP, professor of clinical medicine in the section of emergency medicine at the Louisiana State University Health School of Medicine in New Orleans.
“Rapid assessment and treatment of the critically ill patient includes navigating the transition of care from the emergency department to the ICU or [operating room]. Our ability to anticipate the patient’s clinical course and communicate our treatment plan and goals of care can improve clinical outcomes,” Dr. DeBlieux said.
He shared an example of an intervention he will discuss at his presentation: Once a patient has received an endotracheal tube for airway protection, “often clinicians allow respiratory technicians to decide the best ventilator settings. However, these decisions may not be based on the best level of evidence. Utilizing normal ventilatory rates and low tidal volume settings can save lives and reduce patient harm,” Dr. DeBlieux said.