Return to Work in Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest Survivors: A Nationwide Register-Based Follow-Up Study

Kristian Dahl Kragholm Sørensen, Mads Wissenberg, Rikke Normark Mortensen, Kirsten Fonager, Svend Eggert Jensen, Shahzleen Rajan, Freddy Knudsen Lippert, Erika Frischknecht Christensen, Poul Anders Hansen, Torsten Lang-Jensen, Ole Mazur Hendriksen, Lars Køber, Gunnar Gislason, Christian Torp-Pedersen, Bodil Steen Rasmussen

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

110 Citations (Scopus)


BACKGROUND: -Data on long-term function of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest survivors are sparse. We examined return to work as proxy of preserved function without major neurological deficits in survivors.

METHODS AND RESULTS: -In Denmark, out-of-hospital cardiac arrests are systematically reported to the Danish Cardiac Arrest Register since 2001. During 2001-2011, we identified 4,354 patients employed before arrest among 12,332 working age patients (18-65 years), of which 796 survived to day 30. Among 796 survivors (median age 53 years [Q1-Q3 46-59]; 81.5% men), 610 (76.6%) returned to work in a median time of 4 months [Q1-Q3 1-19] with a median time of 3 years spent back at work, of which 74.6% (N=455) remained employed without sick leaves during the first six months after return to work. This latter proportion of survivors returning to work increased over time (66.1% in 2001-2005 versus 78.1% in 2006-2011, P=0.002). In multivariable Cox regression analysis, factors associated with return to work with ≥6 months of sustainable employment were 1] arrest during 2006-2011 versus 2001-2005, HR 1.38 (95% CI, 1.05-1.82); 2] male gender, HR 1.48 (CI 95%, 1.06-2.07); 3] age of 18-49 versus 50-65 years, HR 1.32 (95% CI, 1.02-1.68); 4] bystander-witnessed arrest, HR 1.79 (95% CI, 1.17-2.76); and 5] bystander cardiopulmonary resuscitation, HR 1.38 (95% CI, 1.02-1.87).

CONCLUSIONS: -Of 30-day survivors employed before arrest, 76.6% returned to work. The percentage of survivors returning to work increased significantly along with improved survival during 2001-2011 suggesting an increase in proportions of survivors with preserved function over time.

Original languageEnglish
Issue number19
Pages (from-to)1682-1690
Number of pages9
Publication statusPublished - 2015


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