May 30, 2016

PEA (Pulseless Electrical Activity

Learn to identify and Treat PEA

Pulseless Electrical Activity

PEA is defined as any heart rhythm that is organized, but not accompanied by any palpable pulse. Essentially, the ECG will show a rhythm that should be producing a pulse, but no pulse is present. PEA is very common after defibrillation, though PEA itself is not a shockable rhythm. The Cardiac Arrest Algorithm should be initiated instantly.


A vasopressor is a medication that produces vasoconstriction. Vasoconstriction helps increase blood flow to the brain and the heart as it increased blood pressure. This is helpful during CPR as increased flow to the heart and brain is essential when the heart itself is not pumping correctly. Epinephrine is the primary vasopressor used because of its vasoconstrictive effects, though vasopressin may also be used and has shown to be nearly as effective as epinephrine.

View the Adult Cardiac Arrest Algorithm