Saturday, March 17, 2007

CPR may soon be CR...

Years ago I taught Cardio-Pulmonary Resuscitation as a volunteer for the Red Cross. Since then I have noticed the methods have been changed almost annually. Fair enough - rescuers have undoubtedly learned more from actually using the technique.

Well, a BIG change may be coming. Forget the mouth-to-mouth stuff (at least for cardiac arrest).
Forget mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. When somebody collapses in cardiac arrest, experts now say, bystanders should not bother breathing into his or her mouth, once considered a key component of cardiopulmonary resuscitation.

"Rescue breathing is an oxymoron," says Gordon Ewy of the University of Arizona College of Medicine. "We've been doing it wrong for 40 years." [More]

One reason compressions-only has been more successful is the reluctance of bystanders to do full CPR, so no compressions at all were given. Updating the methods taught will also end a standard joke set-up that was worn out years ago. (Bunch of guys - one collapses - all argue about who does the "kiss of life" - etc.)

For a really good demonstration and some pretty straightforward information about how successful resuscitation may be, click here.

Important to remember for farmers: mouth-to-mouth is still imperative for drowning, suffocation, etc. when breathing has stopped first.

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