Heart Rhythm Society

Heart Rhythm Society

Source:

Chugh H, et al. Abstract B-PO01-089. Presented at: Heart Rhythm 2021; July 28-31, 2021 (hybrid meeting).

Disclosures: Reinier reports no relevant financial disclosures.
July 31, 2021
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Sudden cardiac arrest incidence elevated during COVID-19 pandemic

Source:

Chugh H, et al. Abstract B-PO01-089. Presented at: Heart Rhythm 2021; July 28-31, 2021 (hybrid meeting).

Disclosures: Reinier reports no relevant financial disclosures.
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Higher COVID-19 incidence correlated with significantly higher sudden cardiac arrest incidence and lower survival rates during the pandemic period in the U.S., according to findings presented at the hybrid Heart Rhythm 2021 meeting.

The objective of the study was “to compare sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) incidence and outcomes during the COVID-19 pandemic (March 1 to Dec. 31, 2020) to the corresponding period in 2019 in a U.S. community,” the researchers wrote in an abstract.

Someone clutching heart
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Kyndaron Reinier, research specialist at Cedars-Sinai, and colleagues analyzed data from Ventura County, California to determine the number of sudden cardiac arrests with likely cardiac etiology attended by emergency medical services (EMS) during the COVID-19 pandemic. The COVID-19 monthly counts were taken from the CDC data. Researchers compared the amount of SCAs in 2019 to the amount in 2020.

In 2019, there were 314 SCAs in Ventura County (average, 31.4 cases per month; 10-month incidence rate, 36.9 per 100,000 people) compared with 410 in 2020 (average, 41 cases per month, 30% higher than in 2019; 10-month incidence rate, 48.2 per 100,000 people; P < .001). An increase in SCA and COVID-19 also occurred in the area in December 2020.

Researchers found that the proportion of SCAs with shockable rhythm declined from 25% in 2019 to 19% in 2020 (P = .05), as did survival to hospital discharge (14.7% to 8.8%; P = .01).

There were no differences in proportion of SCAs with witnessed arrest (P = .2), bystander CPR (P = .1) and return of spontaneous circulation (P = .15).

“SCA incidence was significantly higher and survival outcomes lower during the COVID-19 pandemic period, with evidence of overlap between the two conditions,” Chugh and colleagues wrote in the abstract. “These findings have implications for community public health and EMS response planning during the pandemic and subsequent outbreaks.”