Pardon my ignorance but what would happen? It seems as if the respirations would continue, heartbeat or no...Is that right? Would appreciate any insight - thanks.
Apr 2, '10
The easiest way to look at it is to seperate the two. The vent is a machine. Yes some settings can be patient driven but it is a machine and you tell it what to do.
The patient is a seperate entity all his/her own. Independant from the ventialtor (this is different than dependant ON the vent).
So yes,if the patient stops working as in cardiac arrest, the machine just keeps on going because it is a machine seperate from the patient and is just doing it's job.
It's kind of the same thing you may experience with a pacemaker. When a patient dies, the pacemaker has to be turned off by a magnet because it is a machine that will just keep going and doing it's thing until you tell it to stop.
I hope that makes sense.
ETA: If a patient is on a vent they are probably not breathing on their own so no, the patient would not still be breathing in cardiac arrest but the machine would still be trying to pump them full of air giving them the appearance of "breathing".
Last edit by aerorunner80 on Apr 2, '10
: Reason: addendum