Cardiac arrest – prognostic biomarkers and aspects of shock

Martin Annborn

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis (compilation)

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Some improvement has been seen in survival after cardiac arrest but the outcome is still poor and 50-70% of patients do not survive despite successful return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC). The cause of death is multifactorial. The majority of patients die from brain injury, but up to 35% die as a result of circulatory failure.

First, to investigate the release profiles of an array of biomarkers in patients treated with mild induced hypothermia after cardiac arrest and study their correlation to the post-cardiac arrest syndrome (PCAS) and long-term outcome; Second, to investigate the effect of two different target temperatures (33°C and 36°C) on hemodynamics and vasopressor requirement in cardiac arrest patients and; Third, to investigate the association of target temperature with outcome in patients with shock in admission.

The biomarkers were collected serially at 8 time points during the first 72 hours following cardiac arrest in 84 still comatose post-resuscitation cardiac arrest patients treated with mild induced hypothermia. We analysed markers of inflammation; procalcitonin (PCT) and c-reactive protein (CRP), oxidation; peroxiredoxin 4 (prx4), cardiac stress; MR-proANP, cardiac injury; Troponin T (TnT), brain injury; Neuron specific enlolase (NSE), and the stress hormone; CT-proAVP (copeptin). Outcome was assessed at 6 months with the cerebral performance category scale (CPC) where CPC 1-2 was considered a good outcome. The cardiovascular sequential organ failure assessment score (SOFA-score) and the time to ROSC were used as surrogate markers for the PCAS. Three different definitions of infection were used to assess occurrence of infection.
The effect of a target temperature of 33°C or 36°C on hemodynamics was investigated in all patients with available vasopressor data (n=920) in the ‘Targeted temperature management at 33°C versus 36°C after cardiac arrest’ trial and in patients with shock on admission (n=139). Primary outcome was mortality. Secondary outcomes were vasopressor requirements as assessed by the cardiovascular SOFA-score, serum lactate concentrations, mean arterial pressure, and heart rate.

PCT, CT-proAVP and MR-proANP were all significantly higher in patients with poor outcome and correlated to surrogate markers of the PCAS. No specific cut-off levels were identified. PCT release was not associated to infection. Combinations of biomarkers may be a promising concept to improve prognostication. A targeted temperature of 33°C was associated with increased vasopressor requirements and increased lactate levels in both our investigated cohorts. A low MAP during the intervention (0-36 hours) was associated with poor outcome after adjustment for baseline characteristics.

Biomarkers from other sources than the brain are associated to the PCAS and may be promising biomarkers to prognosticate outcome, alone or in combination. Targeted temperature management at 33°C is associated with increased vasopressor requirements and severity of shock and does not improve outcome as compared to 36°C.
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Anesthesiology and Intensive Care
  • Friberg, Hans, Supervisor
  • Erlinge, David, Supervisor
  • Nielsen, Niklas, Supervisor
Award date2014 Dec 11
ISBN (Print)978-91-7619-069-2
Publication statusPublished - 2014

Bibliographical note

Defence details

Date: 2014-12-11
Time: 09:00
Place: Segerfalkssalen, BMC, Sölvegatan 17, Lund.

External reviewer(s)

Name: Cariou, Alain
Title: Prof.
Affiliation: Paris Descarets University, Paris, France


Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Anesthesiology and Intensive Care


  • Cardiac arrest
  • shock
  • outcome
  • prognostication
  • post cardiac arrest syndrome
  • hypothermia


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