Erik Westhall

affiliated with the university, Post-doc researcher

Research areas and keywords

UKÄ subject classification

  • Neurosciences
  • Clinical Medicine


  • EEG, Brain injury, Cardiac arrest, Prognosis


Erik Westhall is a senior consultant in clinical neurophysiology at the department of imaging and physiology at Skane University Hospital in Lund/Malmo, Sweden.

His research area at the department of clinical sciences at the medical faculty of Lund University is electrophysiological measurements in critically ill patients suffering from acute brain injury focusing on neuroprognostication and assessment of electrographic seizures.


The intensive care has developed considerably during the recent decades and monitoring of organ function is important to guide treatment and for prognostication.


Since 2006 his research has mainly focused on evaluating the prognostic value of different EEG (electroencephalography) patterns in resuscitated comatose postcardiac arrest patients, using both simplified continuous EEG-monitoring and routine EEG.


The doctorial dissertation ”Electroencephalography for neurological prognostication after cardiac arrest” was defended in march 2016.


In the PhD project he evaluated a patient cohort included 2004-2008 (Coma project in Lund) monitored with simplified continuous EEG-monitoring showing that this technique was feasible in the ICU and had a strong positive as well as negative prognostic value.


In the Target Temperature Management trial (2010-2013) he is coordinating the EEG analysis in collaboration with researchers from Denmark, The Netherlands and Switzerland. The EEG-studies include nearly 400 routine EEGs performed in all 36 TTM-sites. The most important finding in the main publication is that a highly malignant routine EEG reliably predicts a poor prognosis.


In the post-doc projects electrographic status epilepticus is also an interest of research. The condition affects nearly one third of the postcardiac arrest patients and is traditionally considered a marker of poor prognosis. However, a sub-group of patients with relatively late onset of status epilepticus developing from an established continuous background may have a better prognosis.


In the SSEP-project the prognostic value of the electrophysiologic method median nerve somatosensory evoked potentials will be retrospectively evaluated (2016-2017), in collaboration with researchers from Germany and Denmark, in approximately 500 postcardiac arrest patients.


The CHIC (Copenhagen Head Injury Ciclosporin) study (2015-2017) is a study on safety and pharmacokinetics for ciclosporin in patients with severe traumatic brain injury ( NCT01825044, Sponsor NeuroVive Pharmaceutical AB). These patients  are monitored with simplified continuous EEG-monitoring, which will be correlated to outcome and described in a separate publication. Prevalence of electrographic seizures will also be assessed.


The international multicentre TTM2 Biomarker study will start including patients 2017. 1600 postcardiac arrest patients are planned to be included from sites mainly in Europe and in the US. EEG-registrations will be part of this study and the prognostic value of EEG combined with other prognostic tools will be evaluated.


The overall aim of the projects is to learn more about the brain during the critical time period after a global ischemic event or an acute brain injury, which may have future implications on treatments to limit the extent of injury.

Recent research outputs

Anna Lybeck, Hans Friberg, Niklas Nielsen, Malin Rundgren, Susann Ullén, Henrik Zetterberg, Kaj Blennow, Tobias Cronberg & Erik Westhall, 2021 Jan 1, In: Resuscitation. 158, p. 253-257 5 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Christian Endisch, Erik Westhall, Martin Kenda, Kaspar J. Streitberger, Hans Kirkegaard, Werner Stenzel, Christian Storm, Christoph J. Ploner, Tobias Cronberg, Hans Friberg, Elisabet Englund & Christoph Leithner, 2020 Nov, In: JAMA Neurology. 77, 11, p. 1430-1439 10 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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