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High dose versus standard dose epinephrine in cardiac arrest — a meta-analysis

      Abstract

      In the management of cardiac arrest there is ongoing controversy concerning the optimal dose of epinephrine. To obtain the best available evidence regarding the current optimal dose, we performed a meta-analysis. We searched the Medline database online and reviewed citations in relevant articles to identify studies that met preset inclusion criteria (prospective, randomized, double-blind). Five trials were identified. The pooled odds ratio for return of spontaneous circulation favours the experimental dose. The pooled odds ratio for hospital discharge failed to demonstrate a statistically significant beneficial effect of high and/or escalating doses of epinephrine in comparison with standard dose of epinephrine. The possibility that patients who have already sustained irreversible neurologic injury will be resuscitated carries potential adverse social and economic implications.

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