Chest compressions are done in cardiac arrest victims and victims of respiratory failure. This is pressure exerted in the chest to pump the heart and to continue distributing oxygenated blood to the vital organs and body parts.
How are chest compressions done?
Use two hands, the right hand over left hand or vice versa with the fingers of both hands interlocked. For children, use one hand (either right hand or left hand). For both adults and children, use the heel of the rescuer’s hand when compressing. Locate the chest compression site which is along the victim’s imaginary nipple line or lower half of the victim’s sternum, or 2 fingerbreadths or 1 inch above the victim’s xiphoid process (lowermost tip of the sternum). For children, support the victim’s head with the non compressing hands. For both adults and children compress to a depth of at least two inches and a rate of at least 100 compressions per minute. The rescuer’s compressing arm/s must be straight, rescuer must lean forward, rescuer’s shoulders should be in line with the victim’s head, do not bend the shoulders when compressing, and the rescuer’s compressing force should be coming from the rescuer’s shoulders instead of the rescuer’s arms. Do not pause between compressions. Release the pressure on the victim’s chest completely without letting the rescuer’s hand lose contact with the victim’s chest. After every cycle of 30 chest compressions, give two breaths.
The new guidelines have been set by the American Heart Association on 2010. Chest compressions are now the priority when a cardiac incident happens. According to a recent study, the people who utilized the hands only CPR, also known as chest compressions on cardiac arrest victims have saved more lives and have rescued more brain functions than those with the old way of ABC. But the old guidelines are still applicable for health care providers and professionals which is the standards of Airway, Breathing and Circulation. In this old guideline, the victim’s airway is opened by doing the head tilt chin lift maneuver, followed by providing rescue breathing which is commonly done with mouth to mouth resuscitation. 2 breaths are given after the 30 chest compressions. Each blow should be done gently enough to make the chest rise. Doing it rough and too fast can reflux the gastric contents and can introduce a huge amount of air in the stomach. The chest compressions follow last, with 30 chest compressions a cycle in 5 cycles of CPR or cardiopulmonary resuscitation. These old guidelines are still used by most health workers today since these are still effective in rescuing cardiac arrest victims and respiratory arrest victims.
The new guidelines are very applicable for those bystanders who have not been trained with CPR or cardiopulmonary resuscitation, this also increases the victim’s chances of survival since the oxygenate blood is continuously being pumped into the vital organs of the body. But for one to become an official CPR provider, training and certification can be obtained by enrolling to training centers such as the american heart association nashville cpr.