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What Happens When CPR Fails?

Giving CPR to a older gentleman who suffered a heart attack in the park.

Receiving training in CPR put you in the unenviable position that, while CPR certainly saves lives, you might be called upon to perform it, and it might not work. The reality is that, outside of the movies, CPR does not work every time. In fact, on its own CPR only works around 2% of the time, mostly because it is not designed to be used in isolation. So What Happens When it Doesn’t Work?   If you are trained in CPR then there is a very real possibility that you might be involved in something similar to the following example:..

How To Perform CPR On An Infant

A woman showing on a dummy infant about two finger CPR compression.

Performing CPR on an infant is significantly more difficult than on an adult, requiring a much gentler approach and some fairly significant changes to the normal CPR procedure. The first, and most important, thing to do is to check if the infant is actually unresponsive. Accidentally performing CPR on an infant that doesn’t require it can be very dangerous. If they seem unresponsive, tap or flick the sole of their feet to try and trigger a response. If they do not respond, check for breathing by looking for chest movement, listening for the sounds of normal breathing and seeing if..

Do You Need To Give Rescue Breathing During CPR?

a construction worker giving CPR to his colleague

Until 2005, most guidelines for performing CPR recommended 15 compressions on the chest, followed by two breaths into the person’s mouth, followed by 15 compressions again. This sequence was then repeating until medical help arrived. In 2005, the American Heart Association (AHA) alongside many other CPR organizations, changed their recommendations to 30 compressions followed by two breaths.   Recently, research by Professor Gordon A Ewy and his team, conducted at the University of Arizona, indicated that that compressions alone were just as effective as compressions with breaths, as long as the compressions were perfromed correctly and in a timely manner...

Is It Safe to Perform CPR on a Pregnant Woman?

A woman performing life-saving CPR while onlooker is calling someone over the phone for help.

Cardiac arrest is something that can strike at any time and sadly this includes during pregnancy. Pregnancy does put an extra strain on a woman’s body and this can sometimes, although rarely, trigger cardiac events.   Performing CPR on a pregnant woman can be challenging, but is very much possible. The primary goal of performing CPR on a pregnant woman is to stabilize the mother, as this normally results in the best case scenario for the child. Can Pregnancy Cause Cardiac Arrest? Because the circulatory system of the mother and baby are conjoined during pregnancy, there is an increased need..

How To Spot The Symptoms Of Sudden Cardiac Arrest

senior citizen clutching at his chest because he is having cardiac arrest

Often confused with a heart attack, which occurs when blood flow to a portion of the heart is blocked, sudden cardiac arrest is the sudden, unexpected loss of heart function, breathing and consciousness caused by an electrical disturbance in your heart that disrupts its ability to pump, cutting off the blood flow to the rest of your body. There are more than 356,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests annually in the U.S. and nearly 90% of them fatal.   Recognising the symptoms of a sudden cardiac arrest and responding quickly with CPR can make a victim up to 40% more likely to..

Heart Attack Or Sudden Cardiac Arrest?

A senior male is having a sudden heart attack while his wife is in his embrace.

One in seven Americans has had some form of CPR training, and yet, of the approximately 350,000 people who suffered cardiac arrest outside of a hospital in 2016, less than half were lucky enough to receive CPR from a bystander, leaving them with just a 12% chance of survival.   A recent American Heart Association study into why so few people are willing to perform CPR identified a number of factors: risk aversion, an unwillingness to perform mouth to mouth, and worry about hurting the victim, but by far the most prevalent was a lack of confidence in their ability..

How CPR Was Invented

CPR training using an AED and bag mask

CPR, or cardiopulmonary resuscitation, has become an intrinsic part of our culture. Even those people who are not trained in it are usually aware of it and the basics of its method. It has also been featured on numerous T.V programs and in a variety of films. Part of the reason that CPR has had such an impact is that is works. You are up to 40% more likely to survive sudden heart failure if a bystander promptly starts performing CPR on you. It might be surprising then that the American Heart Association didn’t formally endorse CPR until 1963. In..

Five Common CPR Mistakes

A man who is receiving improper CPR.

Learning cardiopulmonary resuscitation is an excellent way to provide yourself with the skills needed to help in an emergency situation. 325,000 cases of sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) are reported each year and if a trained individual is able to start performing CPR on an SCA victim immediately, the victim’s chances of survival increase by more than 40%.   Additionally, four out of every five heart attacks in the U.S. happen at home, meaning the person you are most likely to perform CPR on is someone important to you. While CPR courses, like the one we offer here at Northwest Community..

Rescue Breathing vs. Chest Compressions

A resque worker administering mouth-to-mouth on a dummy.

Surveys have shown that touching lips with a stranger to perform rescue breathing, and the associated health risks of that action, is one of the main reasons a cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) trained individual might refuse to provide CPR to a victim. Thankfully, rescue breathing is not always required, as multiple studies have shown that chest-compression-only-CPR can be just as effective as CPR with rescue breathing when it comes to cardiac arrest.So what is rescue breathing and when should it be used. What Is Rescue Breathing? Rescue breathing is a technique used to manually push oxygen in and out of a..

How Does CPR Work?

A diagram showing how does CPR work

With the rising prevalence of CPR courses, both voluntary and as part of mandatory work health and safety training, millions of people across the U.S. have been educated in how to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation. Assistance by those trained in CPR can increase a victims chances of survival by more than 40%, especially in the case of those suffering from sudden cardiac arrest, the leading cause of death in U.S. adults. So, how does CPR actually work, and why can it have such a radical effect on a victim's chance of survival. Timely Intervention Nearly 900 Americans die every day because..