Clinical paper|Articles in Press, 109761

Association between the extent of diffusion restriction on brain diffusion-weighted imaging and neurological outcomes after an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest



      This study evaluated the association between the extent of diffusion restriction on brain diffusion-weighted imaging (DWI) and neurological outcomes in patients who underwent targeted temperature management (TTM) after an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA).


      Patients who underwent brain magnetic resonance imaging within 10 days of OHCA between 2012 and 2021 were analysed. The extent of diffusion restriction was described according to the modified DWI Alberta Stroke Program Early Computed Tomography Score (DWI-ASPECTS). The 35 predefined brain regions were assigned a score if diffuse signal changes were concordantly present in DWI scans and apparent diffusion coefficient maps. The primary outcome was an unfavourable neurological outcome at 6 months. The sensitivity, specificity, and receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves for the measured parameters were analysed. Cut-off values were determined to predict the primary outcome. The predictive cut-off DWI-ASPECTS was internally validated using five-fold cross-validation.


      Of the 301 patients, 108 (35.9%) had 6-month favourable neurological outcomes. Patients with unfavourable outcomes had higher whole-brain DWI-ASPECTS (median, 31 [26–33] vs. 0 [0–1], P < 0.001) than those with favourable outcomes. The area under the ROC curve (AUROC) of whole-brain DWI-ASPECTS was 0.957 (95% confidence interval [CI] 0.928–0.977). A cut-off value of ≥8 for unfavourable neurological outcomes had specificity and sensitivity of 100% (95% CI 96.6–100) and 89.6% (95% CI 84.4–93.6), respectively. The mean AUROC was 0.956.


      More extensive diffusion restriction on DWI-ASPECTS in patients with OHCA who underwent TTM was associated with 6-month unfavourable neurological outcomes.
      Running title: Diffusion restriction and neurological outcomes after cardiac arrest.


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