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How do doctors in accident and emergency determine death?

How do docs determine death? What is their procedure?
Can someone help – I’m writing something for an essay so I need this help. And I can’t visit my GP – coz they’re fully booked



It would generally be by a persons vital signs


Basically, when the heart stops beating. But if you mean how long before they stop resuscitation, it is to the disgression of the Doctor, and usually is after 10-15 minutes.


Death is usually determined by whether the heart is beating. If the heart stops the supply of oxygen to the brain also ceases and after a period of time causes irreversible damage. If the heart cannot be restarted after several attempts the Doctors have to make the decision to stop trying! If the brain is being monitored that is also how Doctors can determine death. No electrical activity in the brain means that the patient cannot survive! Mechanical aids would keep the organs functioning but it would be pointless!


in emergency situations they check the person’s pulse. when their in a hospital they look at the heart monitor thing


Pupils dilated and fixed
No pulse
No respiration
skin color
no response to painful setmuli


When the heart stops beating (cardiac arrest) there will be no pulse palpable and blood pressure could no longer be appreciated.
When the respiratory function stops (respiratory arrest) and there is no any presense of breathing.
Whichever of the above may come first or maybe both come in rapid progression, a resuscitation attempt usually is carried out except in special circumstances where there has been an order not to resuscitate (DNR orders).
When there is no any response to resuscitation attempts after at least 10 minutes;
Assuming the following conditions are applied:
>> no any heart activity is confirmed through proper rhythm monitoring and assessment.
>>high-quality CPR is taking place.
>>Endotracheal intubation is correctly performed and confirmed.
>> Adequate oxygenation and ventilation are provided (by AMBU bagging or ventilatory support).
>> intravenous access is secured. >>appropriate medications have been administered.
>>and the patient is not the victim of hypothermia, cold-water submersion, drug overdose, or other readily identified and reversible cause…
The person is considered physically dead. Resuscitation efforts may be extended a little longer but attempt to revive beyond 30 minutes without a return of spontaneous circulation are usually useless.
After the failed resuscitation attempts, with a person who is, non-breathing, pulseless, with cold/cyanosed skin and have a fixed/dilated eye pupils (examined with a pen/torch light) the leader of the resuscitation team will declare the person as clinically dead.


When your heart stops producing beats and the doctors cannot restore beating… thats the majority of when deaths are declared.


No pulse. No heart or breath sound. Fixed, dilated pupils.


at the bed side .
eyes – pupils that are dilated and not responsive to light.
lungs: no chest movements and no flow of air over mouth or nose.
heart: no pulses. no heart sounds heard. useful to look at ECG to show no electrical activity.
in most cases this is sufficient.
in doubtful cases, such as those on e breathing machine, there are much more complicated tests.