Hypothermia Protocol

Pennsylvania Hospital
Clinical Guideline: Hypothermia Therapy for
Post-Cardiac Arrest Adult Patients
Hypothermia Therapy (HT)
Cooling Therapy
Return of Spontaneous
Circulation (ROSC)
Train of Four (TOF)
Peripheral Nerve Stimulator
Neuromuscular Blockade
Agent (NMBA)
Mean Arterial Pressure
Nursing Practice
Critical Care
Page 1 of 7
Sudden cardiac arrest is a major health concern with more than 400,000 deaths
annually in the United States. There is a 5-30 % survival rate to hospital discharge for
those patients successfully resuscitated post cardiac arrest. Ischemic brain injury as a
result of the cardiac arrest leads to poor neurological outcomes and death. Hypothermia
Therapy (HT), also referred to as cooling therapy, has been shown to improve
neurological outcomes for some post-cardiac arrest patients.
To outline the major care priorities in Hypothermia Therapy (HT) during the
resuscitative period for the patient while in critical care. Induction, maintenance and rewarming take place only in the Adult Critical Care Units and only after inclusion
criteria have been satisfied.
This policy pertains to all RNs, NPs, PAs and physicians providing treatment or care to patients located in the
Adult Critical Care Units (3S, 3WA and 3WB only).
The Critical Care Medicine Attending physician determines the eligibility for HT based on the following inclusion
o Post cardiac arrest with return of spontaneous circulation (ROSC) less than 60 minutes.
o Onset of cardiac arrest less than 12 hours prior to induction of cooling therapy
o Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) Motor Score is less than 6 i.e. the patient does not follow commands.
o Pre- cardiac arrest cognitive status intact i.e. no neurological dysfunction e.g. dementia
o Adult- age greater than 18 years.
o If patient is pregnant, OB/GYN has been consulted.
o MAP greater than 65 with or without vaosoactive medication support.
Ineligibility is based on the following exclusion criteria:
• Coagulopathy
• DNR/DNI status
• Relative contraindication is major intracranial, thoracic or abdominal surgery within the past 14 days.
The Critical Care Medicine Attending physician will:
o Review patient history, presentation, assessment, evaluation and diagnostic results.
o Discuss risks/benefits of induced hypothermia therapy with family, including risk for infection, increased
bleeding, and cardiac arrhythmias.
o Complete the induced hypothermia inclusion /exclusion criteria in SCM and enter the orders to begin HT
PJD C:\Documents and Settings\doquin\Desktop\policy.docPage
Pennsylvania Hospital
Clinical Guideline: Hypothermia Therapy for
Post-Cardiac Arrest Adult Patients
Nursing Practice
Critical Care
Page 2 of 7
1. Gaymar III Cooling System (hypothermia unit) with 2 sets of hoses (maintained and stored in the 3W
Clean Utility Room). Important: These special hoses (with Quick-Click Connectors) DO NOT LEAVE the
3rd Floor. Disinfect with germicidal wipes after use and return to 3W Clean Utility Room.
2. Disposable Rectal Temperature Probe (Stored in 3 Widener Clean Utility Room above cooling units)
3. Gaymar RaprRound Body Wraps (Call SPD to reorder as needed); SPD storeroom locations are as
• Leg Wraps (2) and
SPD Location 15 – F0 – A
• Large Vest (1) or
SPD Location 15 – F0 – B
• Small/Medium Vest (1)
SPD Location 15 – F0 – C
4. Arterial line (A-line) kit
5. Central Venous Catheter (CVC)
6. Flush system set up for A-line and CVC. Important: No Heparin.
7. (2) 1 liter bags of chilled 0.9% Normal Saline (4˚C) stored in Med Room refrigerators; replace at once.
8. (1) 500 mL bottle of D5W and (2) 250 mL bags of D5W chilled in Med Room refrigerator; replace at
9. Foley catheter
10. 2 pressure bags (one each for A-line and Iced Saline infusion)
11. Order chilled D5W for all drips from the Pharmacy Department, e.g. sedation, vasopressors, NMBA, etc.
Pharmacy will routinely store a supply of chilled D5W solutions for this purpose.
12. 2 peripheral 18 gauge IV sites
13. Peripheral Nerve Stimulator (PNS) for Train of Four (TOF) testing; the portable PNS is kept on the unit in
the Med Cart. Return the PNS after cleaning with a germicidal wipe to the Med Cart.
14. BAIR Hugger warming unit
15. BAIR Hugger 241 Blood/Fluid Warming Set (stored on wall behind the Gaymar Cooling Units on 3W)
A. COOLING PROTOCOL (Induction and Maintenance):
Goal for Induction: Target temperature range is 32 - 34°C within 4 hours of protocol activation. If
unable to arrive at target T °C within 6 hours, notify CC attending physician or resident physician.
Once at target T °C, notify resident to discontinue Induction phase orders in SCM. Resident will then
enter Maintenance phase orders in SCM.
Goal for Maintenance: Maintain target temperature range of 32 - 34°C for 24 hours from the time the
target temperature range is first met.
1. Answer any questions the family or patient representative may have before beginning therapy.
2. Verify line placement prior to initiation of the cooling phase since lines are difficult to place once
hypothermia is initiated. Line/tube placement includes:
o 2 large gauge peripheral IVs
o Arterial line
o Central Venous Catheter
o Foley catheter and
o NG Tube or OG Tube.
Important: Do not use Heparin in the flush bags since heparin’s effect will be enhanced by HT i.e.
increased risk for bleeding
3. Verify the patient has been intubated and sedated per the ICU Sedation Protocol [Refer to Richmond
Agitation – Sedation Scale (RASS), Sedation Protocol and Sedation and Analgesia Policy; see
Resources]. The goal for sedation for this patient is a RASS score of – 4.
4. Obtain STAT labs (CBC, PT/PTT, Chemistry Panel, Arterial Blood Gas, CK Total and Troponin Ultra,
Lactate level and LFTs; obtain HCG for all female patients of child bearing age)
5. Room thermostat turned to OFF.
Pennsylvania Hospital
Clinical Guideline: Hypothermia Therapy for
Post-Cardiac Arrest Adult Patients
Nursing Practice
Critical Care
Page 3 of 7
Administer antibiotic as ordered and document time of administration.
Observe for myoclonic jerks prior to HT induction; notify physician. Administer loading dose of antiseizure medication as ordered and document time of administration.
Infuse 2 liters iced saline (0.9% Sodium Chloride) or 40mL/kg at 4˚C through the peripheral IVs (to a
maximum of 2 liters) and record total amount of iced saline on intake record.
Obtain Gaymar III external cooling unit with two complete sets of hoses and one disposable rectal probe;
this unit will be stored in the Clean Utility Room on 3 Widener. The cooling unit must have 2 sets of
hoses with Quick-Click Connectors to operate with the vest and leg appliances.
Also procure from 3 Widener’s Clean Utility Room:
o One Gaymar Torso wrap (Medium or Large)
o Two Leg cooling wraps
Note: If using this Gaymar III unit as a regular cooling blanket, you must disconnect the 2 sets of QuickClick hoses and connect a single set of regular hoses which are stored on the back of the cooling unit.
Obtain a cooling blanket from SPD.
Follow instructions for Setting up the Gaymar III (See Electronic Resources) to arrive at target
hypothermia temperature. This appendix describes the step-by-step application of the cooling
apparatus and adjustments nursing will make to arrive at target temperature. Use Rapid Cooling
Automatic mode of operation for cooling therapy. Set Temperature to 34˚C. When patient is at 34˚C
(beginning of Maintenance Phase), change mode to Gradual Cooling Automatic mode and adjust
Temperature to 33˚C.
Assess shivering hourly.
Shivering Scale:
Mild- facial tremors
Moderate- extremity tremors
Severe- full body tremors
Train of Four (TOF) Testing: Conduct a baseline TOF test in anticipation of a need for neuromuscular
blockade (NMB) during HT.
Follow orders to initiate neuromuscular blockade if its use is being considered for management of
moderate to severe shivering.
. Optimize sedation before NMB is initiated. (Refer to Peripheral Nerve Stimulator and Train of Four
policy; see Section G, Electronic Resources). Obtain a fresh battery before TOF testing is initiated.
Electrode Placement:
Distal electrode (black) is placed at crease of wrist along the ulna nerve’s path
Proximal electrode (red) is placed about 4 inches above the wrist level along the same
nerve path
Goal for NMB: 1-2 twitches of 4 twitches with Peripheral Nerve Stimulator.
15. Have a BAIR Hugger and Blood/Fluid Warming set available for use in the event the target
temperature is overshot and you need to increase body temperature. The Blood/Fluid Warming set
used with the BAIR Hugger unit is stocked in unit Clean Utility rooms above the Gaymar III units.
16. Have the Respiratory Therapist place the ventilator humidifier OFF.
17. In the Maintenance phase when the patient’s temperature reading is in the target temperature range of
32 - 34°C, the Gaymar III unit will continue to operate in the Gradual Cooling Automatic mode of
operation. Set a target temperature of 33˚C. The patient will be maintained in this target temperature
range for 24 hours. Do not make any adjustments to the cooling unit while in the Gradual Cooling
Automatic mode.
Pennsylvania Hospital
Clinical Guideline: Hypothermia Therapy for
Post-Cardiac Arrest Adult Patients
Nursing Practice
Critical Care
Page 4 of 7
Goal: Slowly return core temperature to 36.5˚C over the course of 6-8 hours. The re-warming phase
begins when the target temperature range (32 – 34 °C) has been maintained for a period or 24 hours. Once at
target T °C for 24 hours duration, notify resident to discontinue Maintenance phase orders in SCM.
Resident will then enter Re-warming phase orders in SCM.
1. Report CVP to physician prior to re-warming to address volume status and IV fluid adjustment
2. Report last Potassium level to physician; anticipate the removal of all Potassium from IV fluids prior to
the initiation of the re-warming phase.
3. Document time the re-warming is initiated
4. Increase Gaymar III setting by 0.5°C every 1 to 2 hours using the Gradual Automatic mode of
operation (See Appendix A). Patient’s hemodynamic response to re-warming will dictate the duration of
the Re-warming phase.
5. DO NOT exceed 0.5-1˚C/hour increases in temperature during re-warming
6. Have NMBA discontinued by the physician when temperature reaches 36°C. Continue to monitor level of
paralysis until TOF test is 4 of 4 twitches. At 36.5°C, adjust sedation to achieve a RASS score of (-2).
NOTE: If shivering emerges after the NMB has been discontinued, consider the use of meperidine for
control of mild to moderate shivering.
7. STOP active re-warming once the temperature of 36.5˚C is reached. Do not allow the patient to become
HYPERthermic in the re-warming phase
8. Room thermostat should then be turned to ON
9. Have the Respiratory Therapist set the ventilator humidifier ON. .
10. Document time re-warming goal temperature is reached.
11. After re-warming is completed, consult physician for DVT prophylaxis orders.
12. Tylenol 650 mg suppository PR should be used to control fever for the first 24 hours after re-warming is
13. When T reaches 36.5°C, notify the Resident that re-warming has been completed. Resident will
then enter the Post Therapy phase orders in SCM.
Use VISICU electronic record or, during downtime procedure, the Critical Care flow sheet to record: BP,
MAP, HR, Pulse Oximetry, cardiac rhythm and CVP as follows:
• Every 15 minutes during initiation of cooling until target temperature is reached
• Every hour during the maintenance phase
• Every 15 minutes during re-warming phase until target temperature range of 36.5-37˚C is
• Every hour x 12 additional hours after re-warming is completed and as condition warrants
Hourly Neuro checks
Record rectal Temperature in °C every 15 minutes until 32 - 34˚C is reached, then every 30 minutes, and
again every 15 minutes during re-warming. Record Temperature in °C every hour for 12 hours after rewarming is completed and as condition warrants.
Monitor Foley output hourly since patient may require frequent volume replacement as HT induces
Continuous cardiac monitoring. Please note: HT initially causes a sinus tachycardia, then bradycardia.
The arrhythmia most commonly associated with HT is V-Fib. Other ECG changes may include
prolonged Q-T interval and the occurrence of a J wave.
Pennsylvania Hospital
Clinical Guideline: Hypothermia Therapy for
Post-Cardiac Arrest Adult Patients
Nursing Practice
Critical Care
Page 5 of 7
Cooling Phase: Goal: MAP greater than 65 and less than 120. Follow orders for nitroglycerin IV
infusion titrated to a MAP less than 120 or obtain physician order for a suitable alternative IV anti-hypertensive
medication. Rationale: HT may cause severe vasoconstriction leading to HYPERtension.
Re-warming Phase: Follow order for norepinephine or dopamine hydrochloride or obtain a physician
order for a suitable alternative titrated to maintain MAP greater than 65. Rationale: Re-warming causes
vasodilatation leading to HYPOtension and HYPOvolemia. Vasoactive medication support may be necessary
during re-warming to correct severe vasodilation.
1. Stat Labs:
o Lactate level
o LFTs
o CBC with Diff and PLTs
o Chemistry Panel including Ca, Mg and Phosphorus
o CPK Total and Troponin Ultra
o Arterial Blood Gas (ABG)
o HCG (for female patients of child-bearing age)
2. Ongoing Labs every 6 hours during the cooling and re-warming phases of therapy:
o Arterial Blood Gas
o Central venous oxygen saturation
o CBC with Diff and PLTs
o Chemistry panel including Ca, Mg and Phosphorus
o CPK Total and Troponin Ultra
o Lactate level
Potassium: Monitor serum potassium every 6 hours during Cooling Induction and Maintenance phases.
Obtain a STAT Potassium level prior to re-warming and report result to resident physician. Monitor
potassium every 4 hours during Re-warming phase. Rationale: When HT is initiated, HYPOkalemia is
a result of intracellular potassium shift exacerbated by the cooling therapy. With re-warming, the
potassium will move back into the serum, so more frequent monitoring of potassium levels is indicated.
Glucose: Monitor finger-stick glucose levels every hour. (Refer to the Insulin Protocol for glucose
management; see Section G, Electronic Resources). Rationale: Cooling therapy leads to decreased
insulin secretion and decreased sensitivity causing HYPERglycemia. HYPERglycemia, in turn,
contributes to increased brain ischemia. Re-warming resolves resistance to insulin and puts the patient at
risk for developing a rebound HYPOglycemia. Monitor glucose levels hourly for this reason.
CXR: Daily portable CXR
7. EKG: STAT EKG to be collected with induction of HT and then routinely every 8 hours times two.
Pennsylvania Hospital
Nursing Practice
Clinical Guideline: Hypothermia Therapy for
Post-Cardiac Arrest Adult Patients
Critical Care
Page 6 of 7
F. Infection Prevention and General Nursing Care
1. Follow Isolation Precautions is so ordered.
2. Use meticulous aseptic technique with all invasive lines and procedures
3. Maintain compliance with vigorous hand washing by all care givers and visitors
4. Administer prophylactic antibiotics as ordered
5. Provide oral care every 4 hours and as needed.
6. Skin integrity checks every 1 hour; reposition patient every 2 hours to prevent skin breakdown.
7. Eye care every 2 hours: apply lubricant to eyes per medication order.
G. Electronic RESOURCES
Instructions for Setting up the Gaymar III Cooling System Hypothermia
Peripheral Nerve Stimulator and Train of Four (Ch. 104 of AACN Manual, pp. 837-45.):
Sedation Protocol (CC homepage):
Sedation Analgesia Policy (Administrative Policy CA 10)
RASS Scale (CC homepage):
Insulin Drip Protocol (CC homepage):
American Heart Association. Part 7.5: Post Resuscitation Care. Circulation 2005;112(suppl I) IV84-IV88.
Bader MK, Rovzar M, Baumgartener L, Winokur, R, Cline J and Schiffman G. Keeping Cool: A Case for
Hypothermia After Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation. American Journal of Critical Care. 2007;16:636-640 .
Bernard, S. Hypothermia for Cardiac Arrest. In: Mayer SA, Sessler, DI, eds. Therapeutic
Hypothermia. New York, NY: Marcel Dekker: 2005:473-488.
Bernard SA, Gray TW, Buist MD, et al. Treatment of Comatose Survivors of Out-ofHospital Cardiac Arrest with Induced Hypothermia. New England Journal of Medicine.2002;346(8): 557-563
Holden, M., Makic, MBF. Clinically Induced Hypothermia: Why Chill your Patient? AACN Advanced
Care 2006:17(2), 125-132.
Pennsylvania Hospital
Clinical Guideline: Hypothermia Therapy for
Post-Cardiac Arrest Adult Patients
Nursing Practice
Critical Care
Page 7 of 7
Nursing Policy and Procedure Committee (1/09), (2/11)
CC Committee (01/09) and (02/11) and Resuscitation
Committee, 01/09, (1/11)
February 2011
Mary Del Guidice, RN, MSN, BS, NE-C
Chief Nursing Officer
Temperature Conversion Scale
36.1 °
31.1 °
Activating Conditional Orders
Background: There is a new feature to the Hypothermia Protocol order set which will allow you
to activate serial lab orders and EKG studies when they are due for collection. It’s called the
Conditional Order. By activating these Conditional Orders, you’ll be able to print out labels and
send the specimens off to the Lab or Respiratory Services for analysis as the protocol dictates.
You are required to ACTIVATE STAT and serial Lab and EKG orders for HT patients. See steps
for activating Conditional Orders (next page).
TYPES of Labs and Studies in HT Protocol:
A. Serial Labs:
Induction & Cooling and Maintenance phase - Every 6 hours
Re-warming - Every 6 hours
Post-Therapy Phase - Every 12 Hours
ABG (Arterial) /Lactic Acid POC ICU
ABG (Venous) POC ICU
CBC/Diff/Platelets ICU
PT (Prothrombin Time) / INR ICU
PTT (Activated Part Thromboplastin Time)
Electrolyte Panel 7 ICU
Magnesium Serum ICU
Phosphorus, Serum ICU
CK Total. ICU
Troponin Ultra ICU
B. Serial EKGs: Every 8 Hours x 2 after STAT order is collected
during Induction & Cooling. Serial EKGs should
not extend beyond Maintenance Phase.
These POC labs are to be
“Completed” in SCM by the
RN once they are given over
to Respiratory Services
These labs will be “Pending
Collection” or “Results
Pending” until such time as
the Central Lab enters the
results and “Completes” the
order in SCM.
These serial EKGs are to be
“Completed” in SCM by the
RN once they collected.
C. STAT Labs
• All STAT Labs are collected in the usual manner and “auto complete” once the request
for a label is generated. Most STAT Labs are collected in Phase I (Induction and Cooling)
Potassium STAT: (Potassium, Serum ICU): Send a STAT Potassium level at the end of
Maintenance and before Re-warming begins. Treat this order as any STAT order and
“activate” accordingly; this type of order “auto completes” itself.
Steps for Activating Conditional Orders:
1. On the Order tab, select a conditional order (it has a
icon next to it.)
2. Select the item. Right click and select ACTIVATE.
3. The order screen will populate with the order information. Select OK.
4. Select the Hide Worksheet tab at footer.
5. Select next lab item to be added and repeat steps 2 – 4 for all serial labs.
6. You will ACTIVATE Ten (10) Lab Items in all: 2 are POC (ABG arterial with Lactate and
ABG venous) and the rest are sent to the Central Lab for processing.
Select “SUBMIT ORDERS” key at footer of screen.
8. For POC orders: ABG/Lactic Acid POC ICU and ABG POC Venous ICU, remember to
COMPLETE the orders after they have been given to Respiratory personnel. The Central
Lab will COMPLETE the lab orders for their specimens once results are available.
How to make “Hypothermia Current” your Order Status / Priority Filter
What is the “Hypothermia Current” filter?
You can specify which orders you want to see by filtering in the Orders tab. This
enables you to focus on selected orders by hiding orders that don't meet the filter
criteria. For example, there’s no need to view discontinued orders most of the
On the left side of the window is a panel that enables you to filter your orders as
necessary. Because you will see many discontinued orders for Hypothermia
patient record, we recommend preparing the Hypothermia Current filter in your
In order to keep your screen view fresh, set up this filter using the following steps
1) Go to Preferences and select Order Review…
2) Select Add New….
3) Add “Hypothermia Current” as Filter Name in the open text box.
4) Select the following while you hold the “Ctrl” key (see screen shot
next page)
Pending Collection
Available for activation
Final Result Received
Select the following while you select “Ctrl” button.
1. Pending
2. Pending Collection
3. Active
4. Available for activation
5. Final Result Received
5) Release Ctrl key and select OK; then select Close.
6) When performing chart checks or to review all orders (including
discontinued orders), choose the “ALL” filter. The “ALL” filter will include all
order status designations.
How to create Reverse Chronological Order (RCO) display format
It may be useful to view the most recent orders first under each header. Here’s
how you can set up your screen to view orders this way.
1. Select Orders tab and go to Preferences.
2. Select Order Review.
3. Select Display Format tab. Highlight each line i.e. By Department, By
Department/Extended etc. and select Reverse Chronological format.
4. Select Close option (above screen shot).
5. Now you have order display as Reverse Chronological so all new orders
will display at the top of each category heading e.g. Nursing
Hypothermia Protocol for Post Resuscitation Patients –
Quick Bedside Reference (Revised April 2010 / PJD)
Pt meets enrollment criteria per CC Attending Physician.
SCM orders entered by Resident or CC Attending Physician
Obtain STAT EKG and send STAT Labs: CBC, PT/PTT, Chem 7, Mg, Phos, Amylase, Lipase, ALT/AST, CK total,
Troponin Ultra, ABG w/Lactate, Venous ABG (HGG for females of childbearing age)
Verify Line Placement: A-line, CVC, Foley, NG or OG tube and 2 Peripheral IVs
Obtain 2 L chilled NSS from Med Refrigerator & replace immediately.
Ensure pt is intubated and sedated (RASS Goal is -4); initiate Neuromuscular Blockade (NMB) for moderate to severe
shivering; TOF goal with nerve stimulator is 1 of 4 Twitches.
B-Air Hugger and Fluid Warming Set is available, if needed.
Gaymar III Cooling Unit, 2 sets of hoses, Vest & Leg Wraps at bedside.
Induction of Cooling: Goal is 32-34 °C within 4 hours of protocol activation. Notify Resident if target Temp not obtained within 6hr.
• Obtain Gaymar III unit. Apply leg and vest wraps to patient. Connect hoses. (See Appendix A on reverse side).
• Insert Rectal Probe and connect to Gaymar III Unit.
• Use Rapid Cooling Automatic mode for cooling induction. Set Temperature at 34°C
• Infuse 2 L of chilled NSS via peripheral IVs using pressure bags to speed infusion.
• When NMB is used, Train of Four testing with Nerve Stimulator q 30 min until response is 1 of 4 twitches, then hourly.
• Insulin Drip as needed for expected hyperglycemia. (See Insulin Drip Protocol.)
• Turn room thermostat to “Off”. Have Respiratory Services turn humidifier “Off”.
Important: If the patient’s target cooling temp is overshot, obtain B-AIR Hugger Fluid Warming set and use this tubing to
infuse all fluids until such time as patient’s temp is within range.
q 15min
Temp°C in
q 15 min
Neuro √ Skin √ & I/O q 1h
BG hourly and as needed
Target MAP >65 <120;
[Expect vasodilator therapy e.g. NTG gtt]
Antibiotics as ordered
Anti-seizure meds as ordered
LABS / Studies:
ABG w/lactate, Venous ABG, CBC,
PT/PTT, Chem 7, Mg, Phos, CK
total, Troponin Ultra, q 6 hours
STAT EKG and Daily CXR
Maintenance Cooling: Goal is a target temperature of 32 - 34 °C for a period of 24 hours
At 34°C, change mode of operation on Gaymar III to Gradual Cooling Automatic mode.
Set maintenance temperature to 33°C. Do not make any other changes to mode of operation during this phase.
Maintain Insulin Drip as needed per ICU Insulin Drip Protocol.
q 1h
Temp in °C
q 30 min
Neuro √ Skin √ & I/O q 1h
BG hourly and as needed
Target MAP >65 <120;
[Expect vasodilator therapy e.g. NTG gtt]
Antibiotics as ordered
Anti-seizure meds as ordered
LABS / Studies
ABG w/lactate, Venous ABG, CBC,
PT/PTT, Chem 7, Mg, Phos, CK
total, Troponin Ultra, q 6 hours
EKG every 8 h x 2 and Daily CXR
Re-warming: Goal is 36.5°C over a period of 8 hrs.
Report to resident physician patient is about to be re-warmed.
Report CVP reading and recent lab results including STAT Potassium to resident physician before re-warming.
Anticipate order to remove all Potassium from maintenance IV Fluids to prevent hyperkalemia with re-warming.
Have Neuromuscular Blockade agent discontinued by resident physician when temperature reaches 36°C.
At 36.5°C, begin to lighten sedation to a RASS of -2.
Increase Gaymar III patient setting cautiously by 0.5°C every 1 – 2 hours using the Gradual Automatic mode.
Turn the room thermostat “On”. Have Respiratory Services turn humidifier “On”.
When re-warming is complete, turn warming therapy off; continue to monitor all vital signs hourly x 12 hours.
Treat fevers with Tylenol 650 mg suppository PR for first 24 hours after re-warming is completed.
q 15 min
Temp in °C
q 15 min
Neuro √ Skin √ & I/O q 1h
BG hourly and as needed
BP GOAL: Target MAP >65 <120
[Expect vasopressor therapy e.g.
Levophed or Dopa due to vasodilation]
Antibiotics as ordered
Anti-seizure meds as ordered
LABS / Studies
Potassium q 4 h
ABG w/lactate, Venous ABG, CBC,
PT/PTT, Chem 7, Mg, Phos, CK
total, Troponin Ultra, q 6 hours
Daily CXR
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Protocol Bedside Reference FINAL 4 8 10.docdonnellp Page 1
HT Order Set
The Hypothermia (HT) Protocol requires the approval of the CC Attending
Physician. After patient enrollment, initiate the following SCM order set. The patient
must be physically located on the Adult Critical Care Units: 3 Widener A or B or 3
When enrolling a patient, please call Patrick Donnelly @ x5815 and leave the patient’s
name and room location. You can also page Patrick at 0240.
Hypothermia Therapy EXCLUSION Criteria / Contraindications:
• Change in DNAR status post-resuscitation
• Pulseless more than 60 minutes during resuscitation effort
• Greater than 12 hours since Return of Spontaneous Circulation (ROSC)
• GCS Motor Score of 6
• Minimal pre-morbid cognitive status
• Other reason for coma: ICH, SAH, etc.
• Sepsis as etiology for arrest
• Uncontrollable bleeding
Non Medication Orders for Nursing:
A. Initiate HT Protocol (See Nursing Policy Clinical Guidelines: Hypothermia Therapy
for Post Cardiac Arrest Adult Patients and Quick Bedside Reference)
1. Insert Foley.
2. A-line to monitor; NO HEPARIN
3. CVP to monitor; NO HEPARIN
4. Place Gaymar vest and leg wraps on patient; connect to the Gaymar III
hypothermia unit (Follow directions from Quick Bedside Reference)
5. Insert disposable rectal probe (place tip no more than 1 ½ inches into anus and
secure with tape.)
6. Skin check and care every 1 hour
7. Oral care every 2 hours and as necessary.
8. Reposition patient every 2 hours.
9. Maintain head of bed at greater than 30 degrees at all times.
10. When Neuromuscular Blockade (NMBA) is in use: Train of Four Test every 30
minutes until the target response level of 1 of 4 twitches is observed using a
Peripheral Nerve Stimulator, then every 1 hour.
11. □ Sedation Protocol (See Medication Orders)
12. Target RASS score of (-4) during induction and maintenance phases of HT.
13. □ Insulin Drip Protocol (See Medication Orders)
11.25.09 PJD
B. Cooling Phase:
14. Infuse total of 2 liters chilled 0.9% Na Cl STAT over 30 minutes (rate for each
infusion is 4000 mL per hour) via two different peripheral IVs
15. Use Gaymar III Automatic Rapid mode and set target temperature to 34°C.
16. Notify physician if unable to bring patient’s target temperature to 34°C within 6
17. Vitals during Cooling Phase: BP, HR, MAP, POX, CVP every 15 minutes
18. Temperature in °C every 15 minutes
19. Neuro check every 1 hour
20. I and O every 1 hour
21. Train of Four every 1 hour while on NMBA
C. Maintenance Phase:
22. At 34°C, use Gaymar III Automatic Gradual mode and set target temperature at
33 °C. This is the beginning of the Maintenance phase.
23. Maintain target range of 32 – 34°C for 24 hours during this Maintenance phase.
24. Vitals during Maintenance: BP, HR, MAP, POX, CVP every 1 hour
25. Temperature in °C every 30 minutes
26. Neuro check every 1 hour
27. I and O every 1 hour
28. Train of Four every 1 hour while on NMBA
D. Re-warming Phase:
29. After 24 hours of Maintenance temperature, begin Re-warming phase.
30. Obtain STAT Potassium level before re-warming.
31. Report Potassium level, CVP and BP measurements to resident physician to
determine IV Fluid rate of 0.9 NSS.
32. Increase temperature to 36.5°C by 0.5 °C every 1 hour using the Gaymar III
Automatic Gradual mode.
33. Discontinue NMBA when in use once patient temperature reaches 36°C.
34. Begin to taper sedation when patient temperature reaches 36.5 °C.
35. During Re-warming phase and after the NMBA is discontinued, the target
RASS score is (-2).
E. Normothermia Phase:
36. Maintain normothermia (Temp > 36.5°C and < 38°C) for a period of 24 hours
after successful Re-warming.
37. Monitor patient’s temperature using the Monitor mode of the Gaymar III cooling
38. Use Tylenol (see medication orders) to maintain normothermia for 24 hours
following re-warming.
39. If patient’s temperature > 37°C after 24 hours of Tylenol use, use cooling blanket
to treat patient’s temperature.
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F. Labs/Studies: Please note: whenever a patient’s temperature is less than 32°C or
greater than 40°C, report temperature measurement to the lab for temperature corrected
40. STAT LABS: ABG, CBC with Differential, PT/PTT/INR, Chem 7, Mg, Phos,
CK, troponin I, Lactate, Amylase, Lipase and AST, ALT
41. STAT Beta HCG for all female patients of child bearing years.
42. Serial Labs for Cooling, Maintenance and Re-warming phases: ABG, Central
Venous O2 Saturation, PT/PTT/INR, Chem 7, Ca, Mg, Phos, CK, Troponin I, Lactate
and CBC with Differential every 6 hours.
43. STAT Potassium level before re-warming begins..
44. Finger-stick Blood Glucose hourly
45. Daily portable CXR.
46. EKG q 8 hours x 3
G. Nutrition:
47. NPO
48. OG or NG tube to low intermittent wall suction
H. Medication Orders:
a. Neuromuscular Blockage Agents (NMBA):
i. Cisatracurium IV: Initiate Cisatracurium before initiating cooling. Dosing
recommendation: Bolus dose 0.15 mg/kg; infusion: 200mg Cisatracurium in
250ml D5W. Begin infusion of 1 – 3 mcg/kg/min after initial bolus.
ii. Vecuronium IV: Dosing recommendation: Bolus dose is 0.05 – 0.1 mg/kg over
1 – 2 minutes; infusion: 20 mg Vecuronium in 100 ml D5W. Begin infusion of
0.8 -1.7mcg/kg/min 20 – 40 minutes after initial bolus.
b. Sedation Orders: Refer to ICU Sedation Protocol
c. Vasodilator: (select one)
□ Nitroglycerine IV 50mg in 250ml D5W in mcg/min; maintain MAP greater than
65and less than 120.
□ Esmolol IV 2500 mg in 250 ml NSS in mcg/kg/min; maintain MAP greater than
65and less than 120. Use with tachycardia or acute ischemia/MI without LV
dysfunction. Initiate 50 mcg/kg/min and increase by 50mcg/kg/min to a max rate of
300 mcg/kg/min for a heart rate of less 100.
d. Vasopressor: (Norepinephrine: 4 mg in 250 ml D5W in mcg/min); maintain MAP
greater than 65 and less than 120.
e. Insulin Protocol: If 2 consecutive finger-stick glucose results are greater than 150,
begin Insulin Protocol.
f. DVT Prophylaxis:
i. □ Heparin 5000 units SubQ every 8 hour
ii. □ Intermittent Compression Stocking after Re-warming completed.
g. GI Prophylaxis:
i. Famotidine 20 mg via NG/OG tube or IV every 12 hrs.
h. Meperidine for shivering once NMBA is discontinued: Meperidine 12.5 – 25 mg
every 4 – 6 hours IVP (not to exceed 100mg) can be used to treat shivering once the
NMBA has been stopped. NOTE: do not use in renal failure, oliguria, or in patients
taking an MAO inhibitor, Buspirone or SSRI.
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i. Opthalmic Lubricant Ointment: 1 application to both eyes every 2 hours for
j. Tylenol (Select one)
□ 650 mg suppository PR every 4 hours for Temp greater than 38°C
□ Tylenol liquid 160 mg/5ml (Give 650 mg = 20 ml) via Orogastric or DHT for
Temp greater than 38°C
11.25.09 PJD
Set-up Procedure for INDUCTION of Hypothermia Therapy:
• Fill water reservoir to green line with distilled water.
• Temperature probe should be inserted into patient at this time using a disposable patient probe with reusable adapter cable
• Apply the vest wrap to the patient. Body wraps are designed to be in direct contact with the skin. Connect vest wrap to fist set of gray
hoses; connect hoses to machine.
• Apply the leg wraps to the patient. Body wraps are designed to be in direct contact with the skin.
• Interconnect the leg wraps using one tube from each leg wrap. Connect the remaining leg wrap tubing to the 2nd gray hose set. Connect
2nd set of hoses to machine.
Turn machine ON.
Machine will prompt you to select a Mode. Press the button for Auto Mode. The machine will default to RAPID setting.
Set the Temperature to 34 °C. Continue to observe wraps to ensure no kinks nor folds and no obstruction to the water flow. (See below).
Achieving and Maintaining Patient Target Temperature (MAINTENANCE Phase)
When 34 °C has been reached, change the machine setting to GRADUAL by pressing the AUTO button twice.
Decrease temperature setting to 33 °C.
Continue maintenance for 24 hours. Don’t make any adjustments to the set temperature of 33 °C since the Medi- Therm will continue
to adjust the water temperature when necessary in order to achieve and maintain patient set point temperature.
Important: DO NOT READJUST the machine. There will then be an interval between ½ h - 1 hour of minimal patient temperature
overshoot. Patient temperature may fluctuate approximately 0.6° until the water temperature stabilizes.
Active RE-WARMING Phase
The Rapr-Round body wraps should remain on the patient.
Use Auto GRADUAL Mode to control body wrap temperature.
Adjust the patient set point temperature .5° C every 1 - 2 hours as necessary to increase the patient temperature to 36.5°C over 8 hours.
This gradual increase will help to prevent the patient from being re-warmed too quickly.
After Re-warming is completed, press Monitor mode to continue to display patient temperature.
To Check the Flow though the Vest and Leg Wraps:
• Disconnect one gray hose set from the machine; if flow path is patent, alarm will not sound; reconnect.
• Disconnect 2nd set of gray hoses from machine; if flow is patent, alarm will not sound; reconnect.
• If alarm continues, remove from service. Contact BioMEd Dept. Obtain new cooling unit.
In this box is a diagram of the
control board for the Gaymar III
cooling unit. (See hard copy for
actual diagram).
Where can I find more information?
Questions and Support?
For information on cardiac arrest support
Please feel free to ask the doctors and
nurses if you have any further questions
regarding your loved one’s post-arrest
care, including TH.
-Sudden Cardiac Arrest Association
Support is available from our chaplain
services or social services.
For information on cardiac arrest and
therapeutic hypothermia:
-Center for Resuscitation Science
Support from family and friends may also
be helpful.
For information on cardiac arrest, CPR and
current guidelines:
-American Heart Association
It is also important to remember to take
care of yourself while waiting for your
loved one to recover.
Please remember to get plenty of rest,
sleep and proper nutrition.
This process will be a marathon, not a
Created by: Marion Leary RN, BSN , Shirley McKinney MSN, CCRN
Updated: June 15, 2010
Caring for a loved one
during hypothermia.
Therapeutic Hypothermia
What is Therapeutic Hypothermia?
Therapeutic hypothermia (TH) is
considered an important therapy for a
comatose survivor of cardiac arrest—a
patient whose heart stopped beating, was
restarted during cardiopulmonary
resuscitation (CPR), and who remains
minimally responsive immediately after
the event. It is endorsed by the American
Heart Association and is performed by
lowering the body temperature to 32-34ºC
(approximately 90 to 93ºF). Normal body
temperature is 98.6º F or 37ºC.
How Does Hypothermia Help?
TH works by protecting the brain and
other vital organs. It lowers oxygen
requirements, decreases swelling, and
limits the release of toxins, which can
cause cells to die. TH has been shown to
improve neurological outcomes and
increase survival in patients who remain in
a coma after successful CPR.
What are the Risks to Cooling?
There are few risks associated with mild TH.
On the other hand, this therapy offers important benefits to survival and neurological recovery. Your loved one will be
monitored closely by the health care team
and side effects will be quickly managed.
What to Expect?
Close monitoring will be provided in the
intensive care unit (ICU). When the
patient first arrives in the ICU, please allow
at least 90 minutes for the doctors and
nurses to provide immediate necessary
care. Your loved one will be kept unconscious with sedation and other medications and will be on a breathing machine.
Vital signs such as temperature, blood
pressure and heart rate will be continuously monitored. To provide the highest
level of care during TH, many blood tests
and procedures will be performed during
the first 24-48 hours.
How is TH initiated and maintained?
The cooling process can be performed in
a variety of different ways including:
chilled intravenous fluids to initiate TH;
cooling wraps applied to your loved
one’s chest and legs to maintain body
temperature at 32-34ºC; and ice packs
placed on the groin, neck, or under the
arms. Medication will be given, if necessary, to prevent shivering, which can slow
the cooling process.
When Should Cooling Begin and How
Long Will it Last?
Cooling should began as soon as possible
after a patient has survived a cardiac
arrest. The therapy will be continued for
approximately 24 hours. Your loved one
will be re-warmed slowly over roughly 12
hours until the body temperature returns to
normal (37°C). When the re-warming
process nears completion, some of the
sedating medications will be turned off.
Recovery occurs on an individual basis.
Some patients wake up very quickly after
re-warming is complete. Some patients
may take longer than 72 hours to begin
waking up. It is important to remember
that cardiac arrest is a very critical illness,
and there is no guarantee that recovery
will be possible. In general, no decisions
should start to take place until at least 72
hours from the time your loved one’s heart
was restarted and re-warming complete.
Hypothermia Protocol (Adult) Order Set (Revised Dec 2011)
FEATURES of Redesign:
All relevant orders are pre selected
Providers can only enter one Phase’s orders at each session.
Organized design to pick necessary orders easily.
Discontinuing Orders for a given Phase:
You are required to discontinue previous phase orders prior to placing next phase orders.
Example: Going from Induction & Cooling to Maintenance phase:
Look for (Induction & Cooling) Nursing Orders and select one of them
Right Click and select “Discontinue/Cancel” option
You will next see all Nursing Orders placed from Hypothermia Protocol Order Set.
But only the (Induction and Cooling) nursing orders are pre-selected to Discontinue/Cancel.
Please verify the contents and select “OK” to discontinue.
Now you are ready to enter the next Phase (Maintenance).
Going from Maintenance to Re-warming and/or Re-warming to Post-Therapy Phases:
Look for (Maintenance) or (Re-warming) Nursing orders. Select one as is appropriate.
In this example, we’re moving from Maintenance to Re-warming.
Right Click and select “Discontinue/Cancel” option
You will see now the selected phased nursing orders in the new window (in this example Maintenance)
and all nursing orders are pre-selected to discontinue.
Please verify the contents and select “OK” to discontinue.
Follow these steps whenever you move between phases of the HT Protocol Order Set. Good luck!