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Colombian Journal of Anestesiology

Print version ISSN 0120-3347On-line version ISSN 2256-2087


VILLA-VELASQUEZ, Juan Carlos et al. Cardiac arrest in adult intensive care units in the Medellin metropolitan area, Colombia: observational study. Rev. colomb. anestesiol. [online]. 2020, vol.48, n.3, pp.118-125.  Epub Aug 15, 2020. ISSN 0120-3347.


In-hospital cardiac arrest (CA) is a rare but life-threatening event. However, the epidemiology of this event in intensive care units (ICU) is not clear.


To determine the clinical characteristics of CA in adult patients hospitalized in several ICU of the Metropolitan Area of the Aburrá Valley, Colombia, over a period of 1 year.


Observational study for a limited period of 1 year for adult patients with CA in the ICU of the hospitals of the Metropolitan Area of the Aburrá Valley, Colombia: San Vicente Foundation University Hospital, IPS University, and Manuel Uribe Ángel Hospital.


Of 3710 eligible patients who were treated in 91 beds, 646 CA events occurred during this period, of which 151 were candidates for resuscitation maneuvers. The overall incidence of CA in the ICU was 17.1%, without differences between the 3 hospitals included and the incidence of resuscitable CA was 39.9 cases per 1000 admissions to the ICU. The most common CA rhythm was asystole 54.3% and the overall survival at hospital discharge was 3.3%.


In the analyzed ICU, CA was an infrequent event, but it presents a high mortality at discharge from the ICU and hospital. However, the few patients who survive have a good neurological prognosis.

Keywords : Cardiac arrest; Inten sive unit; Cardiac resuscitation; Mortality.

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