Blunt cardiac rupture with prehospital pulseless electrical activity: A rare successful experience

Li Hua Lu, Wai Mau Choi, Hsueh Ru Wu, Hung Chang Liu, Wen Ta Chiu, Shin Han Tsai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Blunt cardiac rupture is highly associated with mortality. In the recent literature, the reported mortality rates of cardiac rupture ranged from 59.7% to 100%. The probability of survival for those with prehospital pulseless electrical activity was extremely low. This case report describes a rare example of survival of a female patient with life-threatening cardiac rupture and cardiac tamponade after a major car accident. The victim developed pulseless electrical activity at admission. She recovered from the accident, however, without developing any signs of neurologic deficits. This case study emphasizes the value of the primary survey of patients and prompt and accurate interventions, including focused abdominal sonography for trauma, pericardiocentesis, and an urgent thoracotomy in the operating room for primary repair of cardiac rupture without applying a cardiopulmonary bypass system. The study showed that early diagnosis and aggressive interventions are crucial factors to the successful outcome of patient's survival.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1489-1491
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Trauma - Injury, Infection and Critical Care
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2005


  • Blunt cardiac rupture
  • Cardiac tamponade
  • Focused abdominal sonography for trauma
  • Pulseless electrical activity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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