Charles W. Otto, MD

Medical Director, Critical Care Medicine

Professor, Anesthesiology
Associate Professor, Medicine

(520) 626-9700
Medical School: 
MD: University of Missouri-Columbia School of Medicine, Columbia, Missouri
1968-1970: Medicine, University of Kentucky Medical Center, Lexington, Kentucky
1973-75: Anesthesia, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts
1965-1966: Post Sophmore Fellow in Pathology, University of Missouri-Columbia School of Medicine, Columbia, Missouri
1972-73: Clinical Fellow in Anesthesia, Respiratory Intensive Care Unit, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts

Dr. Otto received his B.A. in Zoology from Swarthmore College. After graduating from the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Medicine, he began his training in internal medicine at the University of Kentucky. However, the U.S. Army introduced him to the joys of anesthesiology. After a brief hiatus in Saigon, he completed his residency and critical care medicine fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. He joined the University of Arizona in 1975. Board and subspecialty certified in Anesthesiology and Medicine, Dr. Otto holds appointments in both Departments in the College of Medicine. He directs the Critical Care Medicine service for the Department and is very active in the residency program. He has authored the chapter on CPR in six anesthesiology and critical care medicine textbooks, has over 100 scientific publications, and has held multiple national and international visiting professorships. Dr. Otto is an active member of many anesthesiology and CCM organizations. He served as an oral examiner for the American Board of Anesthesiology for 20 years. He has held all offices in the Arizona Society of Anesthesiologists, including President in 1984. He served as the Vice President for Scientific Affairs of the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) from 2004-2009. He serves on multiple ASA committees, was the ASA liaison to the American Heart Association (AHA) for 9 years and continues as a member of the Advanced Cardiac Life Support Subcommittee of the AHA. He has also served on the Board of Directors of the Foundation for Anesthesia Education and Research and the Boards of Trustees of the Wood Library Museum and the Anesthesia Foundation. Dr. Otto was honored with the Duke Award for Excellence and Innovation in Anesthesiology Education from the Society for Education in Anesthesia in 2001, the Asmund S. Laerdal Memorial Lecture Award from the Society of Critical Care Medicine in 2007, and the Distinguished Service Award of the Arizona Society of Anesthesiologists in 2008.

Honors & Awards: 

Founder, Critical Care Medicine Program

Research Interests: 

Research interests involve multiple aspects of cardiopulmonary resuscitation including the effects of catecholamines, importance of ventilation, CO2 transport and monitoring the effectiveness of chest compressions.

View publications on PubMed

Neumar RW, Otto CW, Link MS, Kronick SL, Shuster M, Callaway CW, Kudenchuk PJ, Ornato JP, McNally B, Silvers SM, Passman RS, White RD, Hess EP, Tang W, Davis D, Sinz E, Morrison LJ: Part 8: Adult Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support: 2010 American Heart Association Guidelines for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and Emergency Cardiovascular Care. Circulation 122: S729-S767, 2010

Zuercher M, Ewy GA, Hilwig RW, Sanders AB, Otto CW, Berg RA, Kern KB: Continued breathing followed by gasping or apnea in a swine model of ventricular fibrillation cardiac arrest. BMC Cardiovascular Disorders 10:36, 2010

Ewy GA, Hilwig RW, Zuercher M, Sattur S, Sanders AB, Otto CW, Schuyler T, Kern KB: Continuous chest compression resuscitation in arrested swine with upper airway inspiratory obstruction. Resuscitation 81:585-590, 2010

Ewy GA, Zuercher M, Hilwig RW, Sanders AB, Berg RA, Otto CW, Hayes MM, Kern KB: Improved neurological outcome with continuous chest compressions compared with 30:2 compressions-to-ventilations CPR in a realistic swine model of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. Circulation 116:2525-2530, 2007

Ewy GA, Kern KB, Sanders AB, Newburn D, Valenzuela TD, Clark L, Hilwig RW, Otto CW, Hayes MM, Martinez, P, Berg RA: Cardiocerebral resuscitation for cardiac arrest. Am J Med 119:6-9, 2006