CPR Guidelines: Studies and Future Trends
By: Terri McKinney
Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is a basic, yet very important, life-saving technique from which everyone can benefit by knowing. For healthcare professionals and first responders, the procedure is common knowledge and a necessary skill. But it is also important for medical professionals to keep up on the health trends that may eventually affect CPR guidelines (2013). The past year yielded several studies regarding CPR and emergency care. Here are two studies from the past year about which health professionals should know.
Current CPR guidelines do not include a time frame, but that could change
The average period of time for resuscitation is 12 minutes – and healthcare professionals aren’t likely to continue an attempt beyond this time frame, as the prognosis for a patient is usually poor. But researchers from the University of Washington and the Robert Wood Foundation have found that longer CPR attempt times may be beneficial.
The researchers found that patients at hospitals where attempts were longer, on average, had a higher likelihood of immediate survival and survival to discharge; more importantly, patients who survived with longer CPR attempt times did not appear to have substantially worse neurological function at discharge.
The study examined 64,000 cardiac arrest cases from across the country between 2000 and 2008.
According to the researchers, the reason that CPR attempt times vary from hospital to hospital is because even the latest CPR guidelines do not include a standardized time frame for resuscitation. This study, while not conclusive, may constitute a step toward defining an effective standard.
When it comes to CPR, two rescuers are better than just one
According to a 2012 study, when a person suffers from cardiac arrest outside of the hospital, his or her chance of survival is higher when two people come to the rescue, rather than just one.
The researchers, whose study was published in the Journal of Resuscitation, found that among approximately 5,000 adults who suffered cardiac arrest in public, the odds of surviving were nearly twice as high when more than one person tried to help. Six percent of the victims who were alive one year later had received help from at least two rescuers at the time of their cardiac arrest; three percent of the victims who were still alive had received help from only one person. The overall survival rate for victims who were rescued by at least two people was four percent.
The study emphasizes the importance of CPR education, as well as bystanders’ willingness to jump into action when someone needs help in an emergency situation.
Health Ed Solutions (HES) is an online provider of healthcare certification courses for medical professionals and first responders. Course offerings include advanced cardiac life support (ACLS) and pediatric advanced life support (PALS) certification, as well as first aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and automated external defibrillator (AED) training. HES additionally provides an online resource library for anyone who would like to learn more about current health trends and healthcare training. For more resources regarding CPR guidelines (2013), including an online CPR certification guide and online AED certification guide, visit HealthEdSolutions.com.