November 2016
Cardiology
Peer Reviewed

FIGURE 1 In circumferential 1-hand placement, one hand is used to stabilize the back of the animal. The other hand compresses directly over the heart using the index and middle fingers and thumb.

PROFILE

Definition & Pathophysiology

  • Cardiopulmonary arrest (CPA) occurs when there is cessation of cardiac function and there are no spontaneous respirations. 
    • CPA can cause global hypoxemia, multiple organ failure, and, eventually, death.1
  • Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) provides ventilatory and circulatory support to patients that undergo CPA. 
    • The goal is to establish oxygen delivery—most importantly, to the cerebrum and myocardium—without causing further organ injury.1 
    • Return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC) occurs when there is a sustained perfusing rhythm, significant breaths (more than an agonal breath), and more than a brief pulse.2
  • Published in 2012, the Reassessment Campaign on Veterinary Resuscitation (RECOVER) guidelines are the first evidence-based, consensus-based guidelines for veterinary CPR.3 

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