Revisiting What CPR is About
Recent studies have shown that, in cases of Sudden Cardiac Arrest, or SCA, only 8% of the victims are able to reach the hospital. The same studies, however, reveal that, if bystanders involved had knowledge of how CPR is administered, these figures could be greatly improved.
CPR, also known as Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation, is a life-saving procedure that is typically administered to unconscious victims who are suspected to have suffered from cardiac arrest. The aim of administering CPR is to ensure that brain function is kept intact until medical facilities are able to restore normal heart beat, blood flow, and respiration.
In the past, CPR has always been about checking the airway for obstruction and administering artificial respiration before doing chest compressions. Because of the complexity of the procedure, and the possibility of injuring the victim, most bystanders who witness such medical emergency rarely jump in to help. Fortunately, the recent changes introduced last 2010 by the American Heart Association (AHA) has made exerting efforts in such situations now much easier.
With the release of the 2010 guidelines, responders now focus more on administering chest compression. One of the changes made by the said guidelines is re-arranging the order of how CPR is done. If CPR in the old days follow the A-B-C method, the CPR of today now follows a C-A-B model. This means a responder would first have to administer chest compression before checking for airway obstruction and then administering resuscitation.
The recent changes in the guidelines has also led to more and more people becoming engaged in helping unconscious victims. For one, they need not worry more about how to go about the whole CPR process. This is because bystanders simply need to make sure that they administer chest compressions until the paramedics arrive. What’s more, they only need to make sure that each of the compression is at least 5 centimeters in depth and would number to about a hundred in 60 seconds. The best way to do this would be to time the compression to the beat of Stayin’ Alive. Most medical professionals recommend bystanders to keep on administering chest compression until (1) they are tired and would need someone to replace them, and (2) the paramedics have arrived.
One has to keep in mind, however, that chest compressions alone very rarely revives a patient. In most cases, there is usually a need to administer electrical shock in order to help the heart get restored to its natural beating pattern. That being the case, it would definitely help if there is an AED unit around to help jump start the heart. Of course, once the patient is revived, there would still be a need for him or her to visit a medical facility in order to assess if there are long-term damage to his or her neurological system because of the cardiac arrest.