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August 4, 1962

Maintenance of Consciousness During Closed-Chest Massage

JAMA. 1962;181(5):446-447. doi:10.1001/jama.1962.03050310086018c

THE MAINTENANCE of cardiac output by means of rhythmic sternal compression during cardiac arrest has found widespread use since its description by Kouwenhoven and associates in 1960. Successful resuscitations of persons with ventricular asystole or ventricular fibrillation have been reported by those utilizing this method of closed-chest massage. The case described in this report illustrates the effectiveness of this method over an extended period (35 min.). It also demonstrates that cerebral perfusion of a sufficient magnitude may be maintained to keep a patient in a responsive state during ventricular fibrillation.

Report of a Case

A 63-year-old white man was admitted to University Hospitals on Jan. 17, 1961, for the 15th time. The patient was well known to the hospital staff because of multiple Stakes-Adams attacks dating back to 1955, which had required frequent hospitalizations. In 1957 the patient underwent repair of a hiatus hernia and a vagotomy without a significant