The ventricular fibrillation waveform approach to direct postshock chest compressions in a swine model of VF arrest

Meghan McGovern, Daniel Allen, Fahd Chaudhry, Zacherie Conover, Ronald Hilwig, Julia H. Indik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Background In retrospective swine and human investigations of ventricular fibrillation (VF) cardiac arrest, the amplitude-spectral area (AMSA), determined from the VF waveform, can predict defibrillation and a return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC). Objectives We hypothesized that an algorithm using AMSA in real time to direct postshock chest compression (CC) duration would shorten the time to ROSC and improve neurological outcome in a swine model of VF cardiac arrest with acute myocardial infarction (AMI) or nonischemic myocardium. Methods AMI was induced by occlusion of the left anterior descending artery. VF was untreated for 10 min. Animals were randomized to either traditional resuscitation with 2 min of CC after each shock or to an AMSA-guided algorithm where postshock CCs were shortened to 1 min if the preshock AMSA exceeded 20 mV-Hz. Results A total of 48 animals were studied, 12 in each group (AMI vs. normal, and traditional vs. AMSA-guided). There was a nonsignificant shorter time to ROSC with an AMSA-guided approach in AMI swine (17.2 ± 3.4 vs. 18.5 ± 4.7 min, p = NS), and in normal swine (13.5 ± 1.1 vs. 14.4 ± 1.2, p = NS). Neurological outcome was similar between traditional and AMSA-guided animals. AMSA predicted ROSC (p < 0.001), and a threshold of 20 mV-Hz gave a sensitivity of 89%, with specificity of 29%. Conclusion Although AMSA predicts ROSC in a swine model of VF arrest in both AMI and normal swine, a waveform-guided approach that uses AMSA to direct postshock CC duration does not significantly shorten the time to ROSC or alter neurological outcome.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)373-381
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Emergency Medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2015


  • cardiopulmonary resuscitation
  • defibrillation
  • myocardial infarction; heart arrest
  • ventricular fibrillation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Emergency Medicine


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