Cardiac Arrest
General Care

For EMS witnessed cardiac arrest, quick defibrillation is key – do not delay defibrillation!


Oxygenation and ventilation is of utmost importance in cardiac arrest care! Use the Broselow® tape (or appropriate equivalent) to assess and determine correct dosing regimen. Note that pediatric patients ALWAYS requires respiratory support with BVM during cardiac arrest.



    Avoid interruptions to chest compressions.
    Ensure full chest recoil
    During charging of manual defibrillator, provide chest compressions.
    Do not use a long clearing chant before delivering defibrillation.
    Immediately resume chest compressions after shock delivered.
    Keep interruptions to less than 10 seconds.




  1. Follow established AHA BLS guidelines for cardiac arrest
  2. Apply waveform capnography to bag-valve-mask if available




  1. Rapid defibrillation and high-quality uninterrupted CPR takes priority over any ALS intervention.
  2. Do not hyperventilate once advanced airway is in place. Ventilate at a rate of 10 breaths/minute (1 breath every 6 seconds). Ensure ETCO2 capnography is used. If ETCO2 < 10 mmHg, evaluate CPR quality to ensure proper rate, depth and recoil is being provided.
  3. Establish an IV/IO with 0.9% NaCl or LR. IV access is preferred over IO access if possible.
  4. Follow appropriate Cardiac Arrest Dysrhythmia protocol
  5. Treatment of hypoglycemia from blood testing identified during cardiac arrest is not recommended.

      Defibrillate at setting recommended by the manufacturer.


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