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Article
July 1954

PITFALLS, PRECAUTIONS, AND COMPLICATIONS IN CARDIAC RESUSCITATIONStudy of 1,200 Cases

Author Affiliations

COLUMBIA, MO.; NEW YORK
From the Department of Surgery, University of Missouri School of Medicine, Columbia, Mo. (Dr. Stephenson), and from the Department of Surgery, New York University Postgraduate School of Medicine, and the Fourth Surgical Division (New York University) Bellevue Hospital Center, New York (Drs. Reid and Hinton).

AMA Arch Surg. 1954;69(1):37-53. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1954.01270010039007
Abstract

THE PURPOSE of this paper is to call attention to complications likely to be encountered and to warn of pitfalls in attempts to resuscitate the acutely arrested heart. Unless one is familiar with some of the hazards, the golden opportunity to restore the normal heart beat may be lost.

Since cardiac arrest is a relatively infrequent experience for any particular surgeon, it is likely that a surgeon's personal observations will be insufficient. This report is based on a study of over 1,200 cardiac arrest case reports sent to us through the cooperation of physicians in all parts of the United States, as well as foreign countries. The following comments are based on our actual experiences and on the experiences of those contributing to this survey.

DIAGNOSIS  Pitfalls in the diagnosis in cardiac arrest should be minimal. With an absent palpable pulse and no blood pressure, the burden of proof would

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