Learn how to explain interventions performed during advanced cardiac life support and the decision to stop resuscitation in Spanish. This is the third of 4 scenarios in which the paramedics care for a patient who has suffered an out-of-hospital arrest. 


Video version of this lesson with subtitles in YouTube. Check out our Shorts where I share useful tips.

ONE-QUESTION SURVEY: Do you want me to continue to do the podcast primarily in Spanish?

Member? Access full show notes, the Quizlet set and the PDF for this lesson within our Spanish for Emergencies course! 




Cardiac arrest, heart history, stents 4:25

Medical Terms: Asystole, ROSC, ACLS 5:35

Interventions Performed 9:04 

Next Steps 12:23 


CLOSING  17:01

Learn More Medical Spanish!

Become a member and get access to our interactive member lessons, where we interpret the clinical dialogue as we review the vocabulary and grammar, as well as full lesson notes, PDFs, and quizzes.

You can also subscribe to access the last 3 months of our member audio lessons via Apple Podcasts.  

Related Lessons

Lessons covering discussions on code status in Spanish

I recorded this clinical encounter with one of my Spanish teachers from México, Daniela Grave. Click here to take lessons with Daniela.  

Vocabulary Review

Presenting the Scene


to witness or to be present during an event.

cardiac arrest
el paro cardíaco

to have a history of heart attack
tener antecedentes de infarto cardíaco

stents, as in drug-eluting stents or coronary stents
los stents

el testigo

Medical Terms: Asystole, ROSC, ACLS


la RCP

Emergency Medical Services
Los Servicios Médicos de Emergencia
Los Servicios de Emergencias Médicas

The next few terms are medical jargon, so don’t worry about them if you’re only going to be speaking with patients.

la asistolia

He remains in asystole.
Sigue en asistolia.
Permanece en asistolia.

Return of Spontaneous Circulation
El Retorno de la Circulación Espontánea

RCE by its Spanish acronym
RCE por sus siglas en español

Advanced Life Support Intervention
La Intervención de Soporte Vital Avanzado

Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS)
Soporte Vital Cardiovascular Avanzado (SVCA)

to stop cardiopulmonary resuscitation
detener / parar la reanimación cardiopulmonar 

the paramedic (woman) in charge of the resuscitation team 
la paramédica encargada del equipo de reanimación
la paramédica a cargo del equipo de reanimación

to take charge or to assume care of someone or something
hacerse cargo de
encargarse de

Advanced Life Support Interventions


He didn’t have a pulse and he wasn’t breathing.
No tenía pulso y no respiraba.

We use the IMPERFECT to DESCRIBE the patient when the paramedics arrived. 

to perform chest compressions
realizar compresiones torácicas

to pump blood to his brain
bombear sangre a su cerebro

Although it is more common to use a definite article (i.e. EL, LA) before parts of the body, it’s best to use a possessive article (i.e. SU, SUS), when describing medical interventions on one’s loved one. This demonstrates a more personal connection with the patient. 

to pump blood to the rest of his body
bombear sangre al resto de su cuerpo

a mask with a bag
una mascarilla con bolsa

When speaking to the family, instead of using the technical term: “bag valve mask” or “Ambu bag,” we simply said a bag mask or a mask with a bag.

to breathe for someone
respirar por alguien

to push air into his lungs
introducir aire en sus pulmones

by IV, intravenously
por vía intravenosa

a round of chest compressions
una ronda de compresiones torácicas

Next Steps 


police officer
el oficial de policía

the medical examiner’s office
la oficina del médico forense

He already passed away.
Él ya falleció.

To express that something has already occurred, it is common to use: Ya + verbo en pretérito.

Unfortunately, there is no more we can do to revive him.
Desafortunadamente, no hay nada más que podamos hacer para reanimarlo.

We use the subjunctive to express what we cannot do: “No hay nada más que podamos hacer.” We always use the subjunctive in adjective clauses that describe something that does not exist. Learn More: Quiz – The Subjunctive in Adjective Clauses

Gracias por aprender español médico con nosotros. 

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}

Do you enjoy our lessons? 

Would you mind sharing a short testimonial?