BACKGROUND: Pediatric out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (POHCA) has received limited attention. All causes of POHCA and outcomes were examined during a 4-year period in a Danish nationwide register and prehospital medical records. The aim was to describe the incidence, reversible causes, and survival rates for POHCA in Denmark.

METHODS: This is a registry-based follow-up cohort study. All POHCA for a 4-year period (2016-2019) in Denmark were included. All prehospital medical records for the included subjects were reviewed manually by five independent raters establishing whether a presumed reversible cause could be assigned.

RESULTS: We identified 173 cases within the study period. The median incidence of POHCA in the population below 17 years of age was 4.2 per 100,000 persons at risk. We found a presumed reversible cause in 48.6% of cases, with hypoxia being the predominant cause of POHCA (42.2%). The thirty-day survival was 40%. Variations were seen across age groups, with the lowest survival rate in cases below 1 year of age. Defibrillators were used more frequently among survivors, with 16% of survivors defibrillated bystanders as opposed to 1.9% in non-survivors and 24% by EMS personnel as opposed to 7.8% in non-survivors. The differences in initial rhythm being shockable was 34% for survivors and 16% for non-survivors.

CONCLUSION: We found pediatric out-of-hospital cardiac arrests was a rare event, with higher incidence and mortality in infants compared to other age groups of children. Use of defibrillators was disproportionally higher among survivors. Hypoxia was the most common presumed cause among all age groups.

Original languageEnglish
Article number58
JournalScandinavian Journal of Trauma, Resuscitation and Emergency Medicine
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022

Bibliographical note

© 2022. The Author(s).


Dive into the research topics of 'Pediatric out-of-hospital cardiac arrest in Denmark'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this