Did you know that in 1903, Dr. George Crile reported the first successful use of external chest compressions in human resuscitation (AHA)?  Since then, CPR has come a long way.  Increase your CPR knowledge and be ready in an emergency; you may save a life!

CPR, or cardiopulmonary resuscitation, is used to increase the chance of survival in those experiencing cardiac arrest – the abrupt loss of heart function. The majority of these situations occur outside of the hospital, either at home or at work. Signs of cardiac arrest include sudden loss of responsiveness (no response when tapping on the victim’s shoulder) and the absence of normal breathing (victim takes a breath when you tilt the head and lift the chin for 5-10 seconds).

Taking a CPR certification course may be required in your line of work. Training can increase your effectiveness and confidence in responding to an emergency. Even if you are not certified through a formal course, you can still help save a life. Hands-Only CPR is CPR without mouth-to-mouth breaths. According to the American Heart Association (AHA), it is recommended for use by people who see an adult suddenly collapse in an “out-of-hospital” setting (such as at home, work, or public). The AHA still recommends CPR with compressions and breaths for infants and children and victims of drowning, drug overdose, or people who collapse due to breathing problems. Every minute CPR is not provided, a victim’s chance of survival falls 7 to 10 percent.  Keep calm and push hard!

Tips for Hands-Only CPR

  • If you witness an adult suddenly collapse, call 9-1-1 immediately. The operator may instruct you to begin CPR. Stay on the phone until the dispatcher tells you to hang up.
  • You should push hard and fast on the center of the victims’ chest. Try to press down at least two inches at 100 compressions per minute. The beat of “Stayin’ Alive” by the Bee Gees is a great match. Continue compressions until professional help arrives.
  • Take a minute to learn how to save a life. Watch the Hands-Only CPR instructional video and share it with the important people in your life.

Sources: American Heart Association, American Safety & Health Institute, LifeWork Strategies, and Adventist HealthCare. The Health Tip of the Week is for educational purposes only. For medical advice, consult your physician. Feel free to copy and distribute this health resource.