Redditch Hale and Hearties Heart  Support Group

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CPR - Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation
 
This page is meant to be used to refresh your knowledge of CPR
The most common cause for a heart to stop (Cardiac Arrest) is a heart attack. It is worth noting that a heart attack does not always cause a cardiac arrest. The majority of people who suffer a heart attack stay conscious and survive.
Resuscitation steps:
Check for danger :  Look around and where possible make the scene safe. Do not put yourself in danger!
If its possible that the casualty has suffered an electric shock do not touch the person, if safe, switch off electricity supply at mains, wall socket, light switch etc. Beware of water on the floor.
If you are on your own shout for help, if help arrives ask them to get more help and, if possible, locate and bring an AED (Automated External Defibrillator) to the scene.
When it's safe to do so, assess the casualty and, if necessary, dial 999 or 112 for an ambulance. 

Assessing a casualty:

The 3 priorities when dealing with a casualty are commonly referred to as ABC, which stands for:

  • Airway

  • Breathing

  • Circulation

 

Airway:

If the casualty appears unresponsive, ask them loudly if they're OK and if they can open their eyes.

If they respond, you can leave them in the position they're in until help arrives.

While you wait, keep checking their breathing, pulse and level of response:

  • Are they alert?

  • Do they respond to your voice?

  • Is there no response to any stimulus (are they unconscious)?

If there's no response, leave the casualty in the position they're in and open their airway.

If this isn't possible in the position they're in, gently lay them on their back and open their airway.

To open the airway, place 1 hand on the casualty's forehead and gently tilt their head back, lifting the tip of the chin using 2 fingers. This moves the tongue away from the back of the throat.

Breathing:

To check if a person is still breathing:

  • look to see if their chest is rising and falling

  • listen over their mouth and nose for breathing sounds 

  • feel their breath against your cheek for 10 seconds

If they're breathing normally, place them in the recovery position  so their airway remains clear of obstructions, and continue to monitor normal breathing.

Gasping or irregular breathing is not normal breathing.

If the casualty isn't breathing, call 999 or 112 for an ambulance and then begin CPR.

Hands-only CPR:

To carry out a chest compression:

  1. Place the heel of your hand on the breastbone at the centre of the person's chest. Place your other hand on top of your first hand and interlock your fingers.

  2. Position yourself with your shoulders above your hands.

  3. Using your body weight (not just your arms), press straight down by 5 to 6cm (2 to 2.5 inches) on their chest.

  4. Keeping your hands on their chest, release the compression and allow the chest to return to its original position.  

  5. Repeat these compressions at a rate of 100 to 120 times a minute until an ambulance arrives or you become exhausted.

 

When you call for an ambulance, telephone systems now exist that can give basic life-saving instructions, including advice about CPR.

These are now common and are easily accessible with mobile phones.

CPR with rescue breaths:

If you have been trained in CPR, including rescue breaths, and feel confident using your skills, you should give chest compressions with rescue breaths.

If you're not completely confident, attempt hands-only CPR instead.

Adults:

  1. Place the heel of your hand on the centre of the person's chest, then place the other hand on top and press down by 5 to 6cm (2 to 2.5 inches) at a steady rate of 100 to 120 compressions a minute.

  2. After every 30 chest compressions, give 2 rescue breaths.

  3. Tilt the casualty's head gently and lift the chin up with 2 fingers. Pinch the person's nose. Seal your mouth over their mouth, and blow steadily and firmly into their mouth for about 1 second. Check that their chest rises. Give 2 rescue breaths.

  4. Continue with cycles of 30 chest compressions and 2 rescue breaths until they begin to recover or emergency help arrives.

Children over 1 year old:

  1. Open the child's airway by placing 1 hand on their forehead and gently tilting their head back and lifting the chin. Remove any visible obstructions from the mouth and nose.

  2. Pinch their nose. Seal your mouth over their mouth, and blow steadily and firmly into their mouth, checking that their chest rises. Give 5 initial rescue breaths.

  3. Place the heel of 1 hand on the centre of their chest and push down by 5cm (about 2 inches), which is approximately one-third of the chest diameter. The quality (depth) of chest compressions is very important. Use 2 hands if you can't achieve a depth of 5cm using 1 hand.

  4. After every 30 chest compressions at a rate of 100 to 120 a minute, give 2 breaths.

  5. Continue with cycles of 30 chest compressions and 2 rescue breaths until they begin to recover or emergency help arrives.

Infants under 1 year old:

  1. Open the infant's airway by placing 1 hand on their forehead and gently tilting the head back and lifting the chin. Remove any visible obstructions from the mouth and nose.

  2. Place your mouth over the mouth and nose of the infant and blow steadily and firmly into their mouth, checking that their chest rises. Give 5 initial rescue breaths.

  3. Place 2 fingers in the middle of the chest and push down by 4cm (about 1.5 inches), which is approximately one-third of the chest diameter. The quality (depth) of chest compressions is very important. Use the heel of 1 hand if you can't achieve a depth of 4cm using the tips of 2 fingers.

  4. After 30 chest compressions at a rate of 100 to 120 a minute, give 2 rescue breaths.

  5. Continue with cycles of 30 chest compressions and 2 rescue breaths until they begin to recover or emergency help arrives.