Tuesday, February 02, 2010
Updated CPR First Aid
For heart-attacks -- NOT drowning:
In witnessed unexpected collapse in an adult (usually the result of cardiac arrest) studies have shown chest compression only without mouth-to-mouth breathing by bystanders is the preferred approach.* Follow these instructions to perform Continuous Chest Compression (CCC) resuscitation:
Direct someone to call 911 or make the call yourself.
Position the victim on the floor on his or her back. Place the heel of one hand on top of the other and place the heel of the bottom hand on the center of the victim’s chest (usually between the nipples). Lock your elbows and begin forceful chest compressions at a rate of 100 per minute. After each chest compression make sure you lift the heel of the hand completely off of the chest.
If an AED (heart with lightening flash symbol) is available, turn the unit on and follow the voice instructions. If no AED (automated external defibrillator) is available, perform continuous chest compressions until the paramedics arrive. Continuous chest compressions is physically tiring so if someone else is available, take turns changing partners after each 100 chest compressions.
*In suspected drowning or drug overdose, follow standard CPR procedures (alternate 30 chest compressions with two mouth-to-mouth breaths. The reason for this: A heart-attack victim still has oxygenated blood, about ten minutes worth, in theory, and keeping it going to the brain and heart is paramount. A drowning victim has probably used up all the Oxy in his or her blood by the time they are hauled out of the water. With drug OD's, they might have slowed their breathing as the drug affected them, getting less O2 as a result.)