Epidemiology of in-hospital cardiac arrest in a Pakistani tertiary care hospital pre- and during COVID-19 pandemic

  • Faiza Ahmed Indus Hospital & Health Network
  • Lubna Abbasi
  • Nida Ghouri
  • Muhammad Junaid Patel
Keywords: In-hospital cardiac arrest, COVID-19, Gender, Causes of Cardiac arrest


Objectives: To determine epidemiology of in-hospital cardiac arrest (IHCA) in a tertiary care hospital, pre- and during pandemic.

Methods: This is a cross-sectional study of inpatients who experienced an in-hospital-cardiac arrest at a tertiary care hospital in Karachi between August 2019 and August 2020. Outcome variables were return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC) and survival to discharge (StD) and analysis was also done comparing pre- and during pandemic period.

Results: A total of 77 patients experienced at least one IHCA event during the 1-year study period. Comparing pre- and during pandemic, ROSC for women was higher during the pandemic albeit not significant (43% vs 50%) in comparison to men (54% vs 10%, p<0.001). During the pandemic, women with IHCA were significantly younger than men (μ ± sd; 36.8 ± 15.3 vs 55.9 ± 12.7, p=0.001,) whereas pre-pandemic, there was no gender differences in mean age. Non-shockable rhythm was more common (92.2%) than shockable rhythm (6.5%). Pre- and during pandemic, there were significant differences in the cause of IHCA for 4H4T (87% vs 100%) and cardiac (36% vs 9%). The proportion of hypoxic patients increased from 50% during pre-pandemic to 91% during the pandemic period, whereas hypo/hyperkalemia decreased from 53% to 34%.

Conclusion: Despite the limitation of a small sample size, our study has provided important information regarding the epidemiology and outcomes of IHCA pre- and during pandemic in a busy Pakistani tertiary care hospital. Our finding that gender differences exist in survival pre- and during pandemic needs to be explored further with more hospitals doing comparative studies.

doi: https://doi.org/10.12669/pjms.38.ICON-2022.5776

How to cite this:
Ahmed F, Abbasi L, Ghouri N, Patel MJ. Epidemiology of in-hospital cardiac arrest in a Pakistani tertiary care hospital pre- and during COVID-19 pandemic. Pak J Med Sci. 2022;38(2):387-392. doi: https://doi.org/10.12669/pjms.38.ICON-2022.5776

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

How to Cite
Ahmed, F., Abbasi, L., Ghouri, N., & Patel, M. J. (2021). Epidemiology of in-hospital cardiac arrest in a Pakistani tertiary care hospital pre- and during COVID-19 pandemic. Pakistan Journal of Medical Sciences, 38(ICON-2022). https://doi.org/10.12669/pjms.38.ICON-2022.5776

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