Do You Know How to Perform CPR?

Do you know how to perform CPR? You may have taken a training course, you may have passed the exam, and you may have a card to show that you are certified. However, that does not necessarily mean that you know how to perform CPR according to the new guidelines.

In the field of medicine, advancements and improvements are constantly being made. Surgery and procedures are performed differently than they were just a few years ago, reducing the amount of pain that patients experience, the amount of time that patients remain in the hospital following surgery, and the amount of time that it takes for the patient to recover from having surgery. This is just one example of how knowledge and advancements have improved the field of medicine. Hands-only CPR is another example of how medicine has improved and advanced.

At one point in time, chest compressions and rescue breaths were administered to cardiac arrest patients. At the time, it was believed that this was the best way to perform CPR. Now, studies have shown that there is a better way. That is why CPR guidelines have changed recently. Rescue breaths are no longer given when CPR is administered. This circulates more oxygen-rich blood to the brain and reduces the risks of brain damage and death.

This is good news for many rescuers. Some people could not bear the thought of administering mouth to mouth resuscitation to a stranger. It’s sad, but it’s true. Now, those certified in CPR do not have to give rescue breaths, unless they are administering CPR to an infant, a child, or an adult victim of drowning or drug overdose.

Rescuers are not always emergency medical technicians, paramedics, doctors, or nurses. Some are ordinary citizens, who are certified in cardiopulmonary resuscitation. They often panic when faced with an emergency situation, especially if it is the first time that they are faced with a cardiac emergency, or if a family member or close friend is the victim. It is not uncommon for them to forget the chest compression to rescue breath ratio. The new CPR guidelines are also good news for these people. They can begin to administer CPR immediately, without hesitating to think about the correct compression to breath ratios.

Most importantly, hands-only CPR is good news for the victim of cardiac arrest. Studies have proven that many of these victims are resuscitated during chest compressions. The studies further indicate that the victims often lapse back into cardiac arrest during rescue breaths. The new hands-only CPR prevents this from happening.

If you are not trained in the administration of CPR, you should contact the American Heart Association or the American Red Cross. Either organization will assist you in registering for an upcoming course. If you are currently certified to perform CPR, be sure you were taught according to the new guidelines. If you weren’t, you should register for a refresher course. It may mean the difference between life and death.