Man's heart stops for 50 minutes
The China Post news staffTAIPEI, Taiwan -- A college student was involved in a car accident in which his heart stopped for almost 50 minutes and was rescued later by a medical team, Chen Jun-ren (陳俊仁), head of Taipei Veterans General Hospital Emergency Medicine (TPEVGH), said at a press conference yesterday.
January 15, 2013, 12:21 am TWN
Chang Hsiao-Huang (張效煌), TPEVGH's chief cardiac surgeon, said the student, surnamed Hsu, had unstable blood pressure upon arriving at the hospital. The team performed Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO) on him as well as cryotherapy. Chang said this approach provided cardiac and respiratory support and lowered Hsu's body temperature to ensure brain cell metabolism slowed. The team removed Hsu from the ECMO machine two days later, Chang said, and stopped cryotherapy on the third day.
According to Taipei City's statistics, only 3.9 percent of patients who have had their hearts stopped before arriving at hospital were saved afterwards. He lost consciousness and signs of life at scene, said Chen. The emergency medical professionals performed CPR and used two electrical shock treatments while transporting Hsu to the hospital. Coincidently, Chen said, Hsu's heart restarted when his mother arrived at the emergency room.
Chen said this was possibly because the ambulance arrived in time. Further, he noted that effective CPR practices and the patient not suffering major internal injuries or massive external blood loss may have led to this outcome.
Hsu resumed consciousness on the seventh day after the accident happened, and left his bed to walk around on the eighth day, said Chang. Hsu did not have any apparent neural injury, which was very rare especially his heart stopped for nearly an hour, said Chang.