Future directions for resuscitation research. IV. Innovative advanced life support pharmacology

Charles Brown, Lars Wiklund, Gad Bar-Joseph, Brian Miller, Nicholas Bircher, Norman Paradis, James Menegazzi, Martin Von Planta, George C. Kramer, Sven Erik Gisvold, Peter Safar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


The topics discussed in this session include a partial review of laboratory and clinical studies examining the effects of adrenergic agonists on restoration of spontaneous circulation after cardiac arrest, the effects of varying doses of epinephrine, and the effects of novel vasopressors, buffer agents (NaHCO3, THAM, 'Carbicarb') and anti-arrhythmics (lidocaine, bretylium; amiodarone) in refractory ventricular fibrillation. Novel therapeutic approaches include titrating electric countershocks against electrocardiographic power spectra and of preceding the first countershocks with single or multiple drug treatments. These approaches need to be investigated further in controlled animal and patient studies. Epidemiologic data from randomized clinical outcome studies can give clues, but cannot document pharmacologic mechanisms in the dynamically changing events during attempts to achieve restoration of spontaneous circulation from prolonged cardiac arrest. Also, rapid drug administration by the intraosseous route was compared with intratracheal and intravenous (i.v.) drug administration. Many studies on the above treatments have yielded conflicting results because of differences between healthy hearts of animals and sick hearts of patients, differences in arrest (no-flow) times and cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) (low-flow) times, different pharmacokinetics, different dose/response requirements, and different timing of drug administration during low-flow CPR versus during spontaneous circulation. The need to stabilize normotension and prevent rearrest by titrated novel drug administration, once spontaneous circulation has been restored, requires research. Most of the above topics require some re-evaluation in:clinically realistic animal models and in cardiac arrest patients, especially by titration of old and new drug treatments against variables that can be monitored continuously during resuscitation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)163-177
Number of pages15
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 1996
Externally publishedYes


  • Adrenergic agonists
  • Anti-arrhythmia agents
  • Buffers
  • Cardiopulmonary resuscitation
  • Clinical trials
  • Defibrillation
  • Electric countershock
  • Electrocardiography
  • Intraosseous medication
  • Ventricular fibrillation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine
  • Emergency
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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