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Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation: Psychological Problems Research Paper

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Updated: Jun 15th, 2022

The issue of relatives being next to a patient during critical medical processes never seems to stop being topical. The sphere might have changed, becoming more of an ethical dilemma, although studies always highlighted the negative effects such events may have on relatives, especially those with an unfortunate outcome. Thus, they might be allowed, but the medical staff’s responsibility is to consider the impact their presence will have. The selected article, “Psychological effects on patient’s relatives regarding their presence during resuscitation,” studies whether relatives are subject to psychological problems after being witnessing cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) (Soleimanpour et al., 2017). The findings might reveal valuable data concerning the ever-relevant issue.

The article’s analysis will target its objectives, methodology, and results. The study aimed to discover the effects of relatives’ presence during resuscitations and compare a group that received sufficient support to the one that did not (Soleimanpour et al., 2017). Thus, based on that, its design is a controlled clinical trial (Soleimanpour et al., 2017). The participants were divided into two groups after undergoing a rigorous selection process that excluded relatives with psychological disorders (Soleimanpour et al., 2017). The intervention group had people willing to be present during a relative’s CPR, and a person who offered support was assigned to them (Soleimanpour et al., 2017). Meanwhile, the control one included the contingent not used to attending CPRs, and its members did not receive any assistance during the procedure (Soleimanpour et al., 2017). About three months after witnessing a relative’s CPR, the participants were surveyed on anxiety and depression (Soleimanpour et al., 2017). The results reveal that the control group had higher risks of those phenomena and post-traumatic stress disorder (Soleimanpour et al., 2017). Thus, the study highlights the importance of offering support to relatives.

The results present in the article might be relevant to clinical practice. They show that the issue is not allowing relatives to witness CPR but ensuring their mental support during the procedure. While it will not directly impact practice, the implications will ensure that the general goal of not harming anyone is intact. The study has a solid methodology but noticeable limitations, as it was conducted within one medical center. Future studies could expand the scope and the sample size to confirm the findings. However, the recommendations are still viable for implementation as of now.

As far as relatives’ presence during resuscitation is concerned, it is interesting to analyze the patients’ demographics and discover the cases when people are more inclined to witness the procedure. It is reportedly more common for relatives to be present during a child’s cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) than when performed on an adult. The article titled “Family presence during resuscitation: extending ethical norms from pediatrics to adults” studies both cases and argues for the latter’s acceptance (Vincent & Lederman, 2017). The study might reveal the barriers to relatives’ participation and its benefits.

The analysis will reflect the article’s essential points, starting from the objectives. The study aimed to analyze the ethical side of relatives attending CPR performed on a child and discover how those principles apply to adult resuscitation (Vincent & Lederman, 2017). A systematic review of 26 sources was used to achieve the goal (Vincent & Lederman, 2017). The results suggest that a relative’s presence during an adult family member’s CPR is more justified than during pediatric resuscitation, as it has more benefits and should be normalized.

Clinical practice may use the findings depending on their interpretation. Some medical organizations may choose to allow relatives to present at both child and adult resuscitation, while others might restrict access to the former. The article’s strength is in its literature scope, but it has a flawed premise against pediatric CRP that creates a bias. Future studies could focus on justifying relatives’ presence in any form of resuscitation and applying a more experimental approach.

An important aspect of discussing whether relatives should be allowed during a family member’s resuscitation is the reasons a physician may forbid their presence. While the patient’s side deserves to be considered, it is also essential to mind the concerns of those who perform the procedure. The article “Relatives’ presence during cardiopulmonary resuscitation” studies the issues from the physicians’ perspective (Enriquez et al., 2017). The findings might help understand the logic behind restricting relatives’ presence and contribute to resolving the issue.

The article has a well-defined structure, making it easier to analyze it. The study’s objective is to determine whether it is more common to allow or avoid relatives’ presence during resuscitation and the potential reasons (Enriquez et al., 2017). The main method was surveying about 3,000 Spanish-speaking physicians (Enriquez et al., 2017). The results show that about a quarter of the respondents would allow family members to be present during a patient’s resuscitation, and it is likely to be a child patient (Enriquez et al., 2017). The most common reasons for avoiding them are a possible misinterpretation of a physician’s actions or speech and a relative’s failure to cope with the situation (Enriquez et al., 2017). Thus, the study presents solid arguments against relatives’ presence during resuscitation.

While the results may be in favor of avoiding relatives, they also reveal physicians’ fears, and those could be the target of changes in clinical practice. Having a person explaining the procedure and consoling family members may be beneficial for both sides. The study is solid in its design but has limitations in the sample size, which is skewed towards pediatricians. Future studies could have a wider and more varied scope of participants.


Enriquez, D., Mastandueno, R., Flichtentrei, D., & Szyld, E. (2017). Global Heart, 12(4), 335–340. Web.

Soleimanpour. H., Tabrizi, J. S., Rouhi, A. J., Golzari, S. E. J., Mahmoodpoor, A., Esfanjani, R. M., & Soleimanpour. M. (2017). Psychological effects on patient’s relatives regarding their presence during resuscitation. Journal of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Research, 9(2), 113-117. Web.

Vincent, C., & Lederman, Z. (2017). Journal of Medical Ethics, 43(10), 676–678. Web.

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