The postresuscitation disease is a specific patho-physiologic state of vital organ systems early after ischemic anoxia. This report summarizes reviews of past research and makes suggestions for future research concerning revival of the cerebral cortex after clinical death, CNS stimulation vs. sedation, postischemic coma and pain, near-death experiences, and extracerebral derangements. The stages of resuscitation when the CNS should be stimulated and those when it is preferable to depress the activity of not fully recovered higher centers remain to be clarified. Future research in rean-imatology should include the chemical nature of endo-toxins in terminal states. Adult respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS, shock lung), a component of the postresuscitation disease, occurs frequently after cardiac arrest or in sepsis and cannot be fully prevented by artificial ventilation. Prevention of ARDS should also be studied.
(C) Williams & Wilkins 1988. All Rights Reserved.