You’re going to keel over when you read this. Well, I hope you don’t because after reading it you may not want to be resuscitated. George Lundberg MD, Editor-at-Large at MedPage Today, says if he collapses on the street, he doesn’t want CPR:
Why Do CPR?, George Lundberg MD, MedPage Today, June 2012
He justifies his Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) request, in part, on this study of 417,188 people from Japan that experienced an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, were treated by Emergency Medical Services (EMS) and taken to hospital:
“Approximately 18% of those who were administered CPR and epinephrine did achieve spontaneous circulation but fewer than 5% survived 1 month and fewer than 2% survived 1 month with good or moderate cerebral performance.
So, if an average adult keels over in the street, is found unresponsive and pulseless by a bystander, and is administered CPR while a 911 call is made, the odds that such a person will emerge from the eventualities of the resuscitation effort healthy and with a normally functioning brain are about 2%.
The other outcomes are death — soon, or within 30 days — after lots of cost and much suffering for many, or being discharged from a hospital, alive but mentally impaired, presumably lifelong.”
The article was quite polarizing. I wonder if those on either side of the divide could be defined by age, where the young defend resuscitation and the old, well, wish to exit as masters of their domains.