Vasopressin as an agent for cardio-pulmonary resuscitation
Diseases of the cardiovascular system continue to be the most frequent causes of death in the Western world. For over 100 years, Adrenaline has been the standard drug of choice in the treatment of sudden cardiac arrest. A team of researchers headed by Karl H. Lindner and Volker Wenzel from the University Department of Anaesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine, University of Innsbruck, has, with the support of the Austrian Science Fund (FWF) and after years of successful investigations, proved that Vasopressin is at least as successful as Adrenaline as an emergency drug used in cardio-pulmonary resuscitation.
In fact, in 2000 the findings of the Innsbruck anaesthetists led to a change in the international guidelines concerning cardio-pulmonary resuscitation. Since then, Vasopressin has been recommended as a therapy to adult patients suffering from ventricular flutter. Vasopressin improves blood pressure during cardio-pulmonary resuscitation, thus probably increasing the chances of survival of patients with cardiac arrest. As Dr. Wenzel explained, "We have detected a high dosage of endogenic Vasopressin in patients who survived a cardiac arrest. We concluded from this that the body releases more of this substance in this life-threatening situation. Our research has confirmed the assumption that Vasopressin is also of use when injected by an emergency doctor: the chances of survival within the first 24 hours after a cardiac arrest is thus increased.“
Alexandra Stolba | alfa
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