Revolutionizing Cardiac Arrest Treatment in Forsyth County, NC with eCPR and ECMO

Revolutionizing Cardiac Arrest Treatment in Forsyth County, NC with ECMO

In the heart of North Carolina, Forsyth County is pioneering a life-saving approach for cardiac arrest patients. The county’s emergency medical services, in collaboration with Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist, have launched an innovative program, eCPR, that could significantly improve survival rates for those experiencing sudden cardiac arrest due to life-threatening irregular heart rhythms.

eCPR Integrates the Use of ECMO

The program, known as eCPR (extracorporeal cardiopulmonary resuscitation), integrates the use of ECMO (Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation) machines, which act as a heart and lung bypass. This advanced medical technology oxygenates the blood outside the body, allowing the heart and lungs to rest and recover.

Here’s how it works: Forsyth County EMS paramedics are specially trained to identify patients who are most likely to benefit from eCPR. When traditional CPR and defibrillation do not lead to recovery on the scene, these patients are swiftly transported to Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center, where they are connected to an ECMO machine.

The statistics speak volumes about the potential of ECMO. A study by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute found that 43% of patients who received ECMO after cardiac arrest survived to be discharged from the hospital, compared to just 7% who received standard treatment. This is a game-changer in the realm of emergency medicine, offering a ray of hope where there was previously very little.

Forsyth County’s commitment to improving cardiac arrest outcomes doesn’t stop at survival. The goal is to ensure that survivors can return to their lives with normal function or only moderate disability.

Forsyth County may be the first in North Carolina to adopt this approach, but it certainly won’t be the last. The success of eCPR could lead to a nationwide transformation in how we respond to one of the most urgent medical emergencies.

The eCPR program in Forsyth County is more than just a medical advancement; it’s a beacon of hope for cardiac arrest patients and their families. It represents a community’s dedication to not only saving lives but also preserving the quality of those lives. As this program continues to develop, it may well set a new standard for cardiac arrest treatment across the country.

For more information on this groundbreaking program, visit the official website.

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Troy Nihart

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