Analysis of Epinephrine Dose, Targeted Temperature Management, and Neurologic and Survival Outcomes Among Adults With Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest

Betty Y. Yang, Natalie Bulger, Richard Chocron, Catherine R. Counts, Chris Drucker, Lihua Yin, Megin Parayil, Nicholas J. Johnson, Nona Sotoodehenia, Peter J. Kudenchuk, Michael R. Sayre, Thomas D. Rea

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1 Scopus citations


Importance: Epinephrine improves return of spontaneous circulation after out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA). These beneficial cardiac effects do not directly translate to better neurologic outcomes, possibly because of epinephrine-induced microvascular effects that produce critical brain ischemia. Objective: To examine whether targeted temperature management (TTM) modifies the adverse association between increasing prehospital epinephrine dose and neurologically favorable survival. Design, Setting, and Participants: This retrospective cohort study assessed 14612 adults from Seattle and King County, Washington, with nontraumatic OHCA between January 1, 2008, and December 31, 2018, and included those who achieved return of spontaneous circulation and were unconscious at hospital admission. Data analysis was performed from April 2021 to May 2022. Exposures: Epinephrine dose and TTM during prehospital resuscitation. Main Outcomes and Measures: Favorable neurologic survival (Cerebral Performance Category [CPC] 1 or 2) and survival to hospital discharge. Results: Of the 14612 assessed adults, 5253 (median age, 63 years; IQR, 51-74 years; 3460 [65.8%] male) were eligible for the study. The median epinephrine dose was 2.0 mg (IQR, 1.0-3.0 mg); 3052 patients (58.1%) received TTM. In all, 1889 patients (36.0%) survived with CPC 1 to 2, and 2177 (41.4%) survived to discharge. Increasing doses of epinephrine were associated with a decreasing likelihood of CPC 1 to 2 (odds ratio [OR], 0.46; 95% CI 0.42-0.50 for each additional milligram of epinephrine) and survival (OR, 0.47; 95% CI, 0.43-0.51). The dose-dependent epinephrine association was modified by TTM. After adjusting for Utstein covariates, TTM was associated with a relative stepwise improvement in odds of CPC 1 to 2 (interaction OR, 1.36; 95% CI, 1.22-1.51) and survival (interaction OR, 1.37; 95% CI, 1.24-1.51). A significant interaction was also observed when the analysis was stratified according to initial rhythm among shockable OHCA and nonshockable OHCA (shockable interaction OR, 1.20; 95% CI, 1.04-1.39; and nonshockable interaction OR, 1.24, 95% CI, 1.07-1.45). Conclusions and Relevance: This cohort study found an interaction between TTM and epinephrine dose such that the beneficial association of TTM increased with increasing epinephrine dose, suggesting that TTM may attenuate the adverse effects of higher-dose epinephrine.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E2226191
JournalJAMA Network Open
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 11 2022
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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