Despite improvements in resuscitative practice and critical care medicine the short term mortality of patients with ROSC has not improved since the first large study was published in 1953.

This describes the complex pathophysiological processes that occur following whole body ischaemia during cardiac arrest and the subsequent reperfusion response during CPR and following successful resuscitation.

Management must follow an ABCDE approach with assessment and treatment occurring simultaneously.

The response to any intervention must be rapidly and frequently measured, preferably with invasive monitoring.