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February 1952

CARDIAC MASSAGE IN THE TREATMENT OF ARREST OF THE HEART: A Study of Three Hundred Fifty Cases, with Two Original Case Reports

Author Affiliations

Chief, Department of Anesthesiology, United States Veterans Administration Hospital.

AMA Arch Surg. 1952;64(2):175-184. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1952.01260010187007

THE SUDDEN appearance of cardiac arrest in an otherwise healthy person does not necessarily mean that the patient is already dead or that he is incapable of being restored to the more usual appearance of life. Where an overpowering insult, as anoxia, has caused the heart to cease contracting, it must be remembered that the rest of the body has not died, although the heart may seem to have done so, and that the heart itself can usually be made to beat again if proper measures are instituted with the utmost rapidity. Kountz studied the viability of human hearts after death, in the usual sense of the word, had already occurred; it was not his purpose to attempt resuscitation. He was able to revive 65 of 127 hearts; in some cases, death had occurred five and six hours before the bodies were obtained and revival attempted.

Sudden cardiac arrest appears