The Brain is Particularly Sensitive to Lack of Oxygen
The brain is more vulnerable to an interruption of the blood flow than any other organ and brain injury is the main cause of death in patients suffering from cardiac arrest.
Symptoms of Mild to Moderate Brain Injury is Common among Survivors
About half of the survivors suffer from symptoms of brain injury even though severe symptoms fortunately are rare. Most common are difficulties with memory and, attention as well as some personality changes, which sometimes may be temporary.
Large Study Reveals the Incidence of Brain Injury among Survivors
Nearly 300 survivors from five countries have participated in a large international study led by the Centre of Resuscitation Science in the Öresund Region. The survivors have undergone extensive testing to map the extent of brain damage and how that may affect their quality of life. Family members have answered questions about their experience of stress and quality of life and a large control group of patients with myocardial infarction have been investigated with the corresponding tests.
Future Procedures for Routine Monitoring of Brain Damage after Cardiac Arrest
Using the results from the study, researchers hope to show how common symptoms of brain damage after cardiac arrest are and how the survivors and their families are affected. The results may be used in future guidelines for treatment of cardiac arrest patients where a routine screening and follow-up of brain-related symptoms is included.
The long-term objective of sub-project 4 is to ensure that all brain-injured cardiac arrest patients in the Öresund region are offered adequate follow-up and rehabilitation to increase their chances of a good quality of life.