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Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation: How to Perform CPR, Types of CPR

Jul 21, 2023

Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation: How to Perform CPR, Types of CPR

Cardiopulmonary resuscitation is a life-saving emergency procedure performed when someone's heart or breathing has stopped. The goal of CPR is to manually restore blood circulation and oxygenation to the body's vital organs until advanced medical help can be provided.

During CPR chest compressions and rescue breaths are performed in a specific sequence to mimic the functions of the heart and lungs. chest compressions involve pressing down on the center of the chest with enough force to create blood flow. Rescue breaths involve providing mouth-to-mouth or mouth-to-nose breaths to supply oxygen to the person's lungs.

CPR can be performed by anyone who has been trained including healthcare professionals. It is typically used in situations such as cardiac arrest, drowning, suffocation, or any other event that causes the heart to stop or impairs breathing.

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What Are the Uses Of CPR?

CPR is necessary for anyone unconscious, not breathing, or who only sometimes gasps in pain since they are most likely going into cardiac arrest. If an individual is not breathing but still has a pulse, artificial ventilation can be more suitable (respiratory arrest).

 It can be difficult for general citizens to accurately determine whether someone is breathing or not, hence CPR guidelines recommend providing healthcare professionals the option to check a person's pulse rather than instructing non-professionals to do so. 

CPR is recommended even though it is considered useless in situations of trauma-related cardiac arrest. Treating the underlying cause of pericardial tamponade or tension pneumothorax, for example, may be helpful.

What Is The Pathophysiology Of CPR?

CPR is given to a person who is experiencing cardiac arrest to sustain cardiac output and oxygenate their blood, therefore saving their vital organs. Both oxygenation and blood circulation are necessary for delivering oxygen to the tissues. Several systems must cooperate to produce a pressure gradient between the venous and arterial vascular beds to carry out CPR. The absence of blood flow may cause harm to the brain after about four minutes, and irreparable damage after about seven minutes. If blood flow is disrupted for one to two hours, body cells typically perish. Therefore, the best results from CPR usually come from starting it within seven minutes of the blood flow stopping. 

The heart's ability to maintain a steady rhythm also rapidly declines. The brain can survive longer at low body temperature, as has occasionally been seen in near-drownings. In the event of cardiac arrest, effective CPR delays brain stem death by allowing enough oxygen to reach the brain and maintaining the heart's responsiveness to defibrillation attempts.

 If the incorrect compression rate is used during CPR, it is possible to lower the volume of blood that is returned to the heart from the veins, which goes against the established guidelines of the American Heart Association, which recommend between 100 and 120 compressions per minute. For example, the victim's chances of survival may be adversely affected if CPR is performed with a continuous compression rate of greater than 120 beats per minute.

How To Perform CPR?

Performing CPR is an important life-saving process and it can help in emergencies to provide basic life support. We can perform CPR by following the steps:

Step 1- Assess the Scene: ensure that the area is safe for the victim. Look for any potential dangers or hazards before approaching the person in need.

Step 2- Check Whether the Patient is Responding or Not: gently tap the patient and ask out loud whether the patient is fine and then check for the signs of any response such as a movement or a response.

Step 3- Call for Help:  if the patient is unresponsive or having difficulty breathing immediately call for emergency medical services.

Step 4- Open the Airway: Tilt the patient's head backward by slightly lifting the chin with one hand and pushing down on the forehead with the other hand. This process helps in opening up the airways.

Step 5- Check for Breathing: carefully examine the patient by trying to look or feel the breathing of the patient. Place your ear close to the patient's mouth and watch out for the movements of the chest and look for the patient's breathing for at least 10 minutes.

Step 6- Begin Chest Compressions: if the chest is in a gasping condition or if not breathing then start chest compressions. Place the heel of one hand on the top of the other and interlock the fingers. The elbow should be straight and the shoulders should be positioned directly over the hands.

Step 7- Compress the Chest: Push the chest hard at the rate of 100-120 compressions per minute. Depress the chest at least 2 inches with each compression allowing the full chest to recoil in between these compressions.

Step 8- Give Rescue Breaths: After 30 compressions, 2 resume breaths should be provided. Maintain the open airway by tilting the head back and lifting the chin. Pinch the nose of the patient, take a normal breath, and cover the mouth of the patient with yours to create a seal. 

Give a breath that lasts for about one second and wait for the chest to rise.

Continue cycles of compressions and breaths until professional help arrives.

 What are the Different Types of CPR?

Different types of CPR can be used depending on the situation. The main types of CPR are:

  • Standard CPR- this is the traditional method of CPR that combines chest compressions and rescue breaths. It involves performing cycles of 30 chest compressions followed by 2 rescue breaths.
  • Hands-only CPR-  It is also known as compression-only CPR. This technique focuses only on chest compressions without providing rescue breaths. In this, the goal is to provide continuous chest compressions at a rate of 100 -120 compressions per minute.
  • Pediatric CPR- this technique is specially used for infants and children. This rate of compression to rescue breaths is 15 compressions followed by 2 rescue breaths.
  • Hands-only CPR with an  AED- Automated external defibrillator devices are used to deliver an electric shock to the heart during cardiac arrest. Hands-only CPR can be performed till the time AED is being prepared.

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