Science Current Events | Science News |

New Studies Confirm Chest Compressions Alone are Life-saving for Cardiac Arrest

December 26, 2007

Life-saving technique developed at The University of Arizona

Two large-scale studies published in the Dec. 18 issue of the American Heart Association's medical journal, Circulation, report that the chances of surviving cardiac arrest are no better - and may be worse - when bystanders perform mouth-to-mouth breathing than if they press on the chest without interruption.

In part because of the hesitance of bystanders to initiate CPR, survival rates following out-of-hospital cardiac arrest have remained dismal and virtually unchanged despite several changes of the CPR guidelines over the past four decades. In the two latest studies, research groups from Sweden and Japan compared survival rates of cardiac arrest victims after bystanders used either traditional CPR with mouth-to-mouth breathing or Chest-Compression-Only CPR.

Both studies found no statistically significant difference in survival rates. The Swedish study, led by Katarina Bohm, RN, of the South General Hospital in Stockholm, analyzed outcomes of nearly 10,000 cases, while a team led by Taku Iwami, MD, at Japan's National Cardiovascular Center in Suita, Japan, looked at the outcomes of 4,900 cases of witnessed out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. Robert Berg, MD, professor of pediatrics at the UA College of Medicine and a member of the Sarver Heart Center Resuscitation Research Group, co-authored the latter study.

"These independent findings confirm what our Resuscitation Research Group and others have found," says Gordon A. Ewy, MD, director of The University of Arizona Sarver Heart Center, where Continuous-Chest-Compression CPR without mouth-to-mouth breathing was pioneered. "To rescue someone who suddenly collapses for no apparent reason, mouth-to-mouth breathing makes no sense."

Shortly before the two latest observational studies were published, Dr. Ewy and his colleagues reported the results of a laboratory study suggesting that cardiac arrest patients face better odds of survival if they receive continuous chest compressions than if treated with standard CPR, in which chest compressions are interrupted by mouth-to-mouth breaths.

"Studies have shown over and over again that four out of five bystanders would not do CPR because of the mouth-to-mouth part," says Dr. Ewy, who has commented on the two new studies in an invited editorial published in the same issue of Circulation. "If people don't have to worry about the so-called rescue breathing, they are much more likely to actually do CPR on someone who needs it. This fact alone is the key to saving more lives. If someone calls the emergency medical services and does nothing, the individual has almost no chance of surviving."

Earlier this year, the then-largest study comparing survival rates of cardiac arrest victims in the light of the kind of rescue efforts performed by bystanders concluded that chances of leaving the hospital alive were actually higher for patients who received Continuous-Chest-Compression CPR (Cardiopulmonary resuscitation by bystanders with chest compression only (SOS-KANTO): an observational study; Lancet 2007:369:920-926).

Dr. Ewy says, "It is interesting that Continuous-Chest-Compression CPR, a technique that has not been advocated or taught and is most often performed by individuals not trained in CPR, results in similar survival as the guidelines-advocated approach, on which millions of hours and millions of dollars have been spent teaching and advocating."

He adds that mouth-to-mouth ventilation is disadvantageous in cases of sudden cardiac arrest for three primary reasons. "A person whose heart suddenly stops, for example because of a heart attack, was breathing normally only seconds earlier so there is plenty of oxygen in the blood. The important thing is to move the blood around, and this is only possible by uninterrupted chest compressions. During CPR, blood flow to the brain and the heart is so marginal that stopping for anything, including ventilation, is harmful to the brain. In addition, research has shown that forced ventilation, including mouth-to-mouth breathing, increases the pressure in the patient's chest, which in turn inhibits blood flow back to the heart."

University of Arizona Health Sciences Center

Related Cardiac Arrest Current Events and Cardiac Arrest News Articles

Seizure risk of anti-shivering agent meperidine greatly overstated
Meperidine, an opioid analgesic commonly used to control shivering in accidental or therapeutic hypothermia, has been linked to increased seizure risk, but a new study finds little published evidence to support this risk.

Ranibizumab found effective against diabetic retinopathy
In a randomized clinical trial of more than 300 participants, researchers from Johns Hopkins and elsewhere have found that ranibizumab -- a drug most commonly used to treat retinal swelling in people with diabetes -- is an effective alternative to laser therapy for treating the most severe, potentially blinding form of diabetic retinal disease.

Study quantifies risk of cardiac arrest in children during spine surgeries
Although the vast majority of pediatric spine surgeries are safe, a handful of neuromuscular conditions seem to fuel the risk of cardiac arrest during such operations, according to research led by investigators at the Johns Hopkins Children's Center.

We've got the beat: Astronomers discover a distant galaxy with a pulse
Astronomers at Yale and Harvard have found a galaxy with a heartbeat -- and they've taken its pulse.

Discovery measures 'heartbeats' of distant galaxy's stars
In many ways stars are like living beings. They're born; they live; they die. And they even have a heartbeat. Using a novel technique, astronomers have detected thousands of stellar "pulses" in the galaxy Messier 87 (M87). Their measurements offer a new way of determining a galaxy's age.

Lucentis effective for proliferative diabetic retinopathy
A clinical trial funded by the National Institutes of Health has found that the drug ranibizumab (Lucentis) is highly effective in treating proliferative diabetic retinopathy.

Device-assisted feeding and poor growth in newborns with CHD may lead to poor neurodevelopment
Newborns with a congenital heart defect (CHD) often need advanced medical care to survive, leaving them vulnerable to cognitive delays. Various factors, like prematurity, length of hospital stay, cardiac arrest, amongst others, contribute to these delays.

Sudden cardiac arrest? Can't find an AED? There may be an app for that
The earlier bystanders can deliver shocks with an automated external defibrillator (AED) to people who have cardiac arrest outside the hospital, the better their chances are for survival.

Video-based CPR training may be as valuable as hands-on approach, Penn study finds
Using a video to train family members of patients at risk for cardiac arrest in CPR may be just as effective as using the traditional hands-on method with a manikin, according to new research from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.

Hands-only CPR in high school class pumps up likelihood of bystander response to cardiac arrest
Freshmen at eight Florida high schools who learned how to provide circulatory support to someone in sudden cardiac arrest using chest compressions without mouth-to-mouth ventilations said they would be significantly more comfortable performing the skill in a real-life situation when their training included a hands-on component, according to a new study.
More Cardiac Arrest Current Events and Cardiac Arrest News Articles

Cardiac Arrest (The Ladies Smythe & Westin)

Cardiac Arrest (The Ladies Smythe & Westin)
by Carina Press

A clueless twentysomething party girl and a feisty senior form a most unlikely sleuthing duo in the first book of a quirky mystery series from Lisa Q. Mathews.

When a man falls at your feet, you'd better hope he's not dead.

Twentysomething party girl Summer Smythe is starting over in the unlikeliest of places; Hibiscus Pointe, a kitschy retirement community inÿupscale Milano, Florida. Her new gig? Working for Dr. A, Milano's much-loved cardiologist. But being in over her head is the least of Summer's worries when her new boss drops dead…right in front of her.

Longtime resident Dorothy Westin prefers to mind her own business. But when the young blonde already causing ripples throughout Hibiscus Pointe becomes a person of interest in Dr. A's murder, Dorothy...

Cardiac Arrest: The Science and Practice of Resuscitation Medicine, 2nd Edition

Cardiac Arrest: The Science and Practice of Resuscitation Medicine, 2nd Edition
by Norman A. Paradis (Editor), Henry R. Halperin (Editor), Karl B. Kern (Editor), Volker Wenzel (Editor), Douglas A. Chamberlain (Editor)

Cardiac Arrest is the definitive and most comprehensive reference volume in advanced life support and resuscitation medicine. This new edition brings the reader completely up-to-date with developments in the field, focusing on practical issues of decision making, clinical management and prevention, as well as providing explanations of the science informing the practice. This volume is essential reading for all those involved in the emergency care of cardiac patients, either in the pre-hospital or hospital setting.

Cardiac Arrest, An Issue of Emergency Medicine Clinics, 1e (The Clinics: Internal Medicine)

Cardiac Arrest, An Issue of Emergency Medicine Clinics, 1e (The Clinics: Internal Medicine)
by William J. Brady MD (Author), Nathan P. Charlton MD (Author), Benjamin J. Lawner Do EMT-P (Author), Sara F. Sutherland MD (Author)

Topics in this issue include: Cardiac Arrest as a Public Health Concern; Prehospital Cardiac Arrest; Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation; Cardioactive Medications in Cardiac Arrest; Airway Management in Cardiac Arrest; Rapid Response Teams; and  Pediatric Cardiac Arrest.

A Cardiac Arrest

A Cardiac Arrest
by Donald Motier (Author)

David Platon, after the deaths of both his parents, the suicide of a friend, and the death of a beloved pet, falls in love with a youth he meets at a swimming pool. The relationship, which is consensual, becomes intimate. It comes to the attention of the authorities and although the relationship would not be illegal in most European countries, in the sexpanic, stereotyping atmosphere in the United States, David is sentenced to prison. Upon release, David is forced to register as a sex offender. David, who has been writing books under a pen name since the early 1970s, in an oversight, neglects to list his pen name as an "alias" on the registration form. Seeking to find a spiritual home that would accept him, David begins to attend a church that was recommended as progressive and diverse by...

Cardiac Arrest (A Short Story)

Cardiac Arrest (A Short Story)

Cardiac Arrest (A Short Story)
By K.K. Chalmers

What happens when a cop can't escape the pressures of the job?
A short story of psychological suspense.
(3,260 words)

Cardiac Arrest - A Reference Guide (BONUS DOWNLOADS) (The Hill Resource and Reference Guide Book 90)

Cardiac Arrest - A Reference Guide (BONUS DOWNLOADS) (The Hill Resource and Reference Guide Book 90)
by Capitol Hill Press

18 Health and Disease Professional Textbooks (over 5,300 pages) For Your E-Reader
* BONUS Encyclopedia of Disease (14 volumes, 4,625 pages)
* BONUS Dictionary of Clinical Research Terms (268 pages)
* BONUS Dictionary of Psychiatry Terminology (167 pages)
* BONUS The Complete Guide to Alternative and Complementary Medicine (135 pages)
* BONUS The Truth About Herbal Cures (106 pages)

Series Description
Note: For best results and the most comprehensive reading and research experience, please use book in conjunction with the bonus downloads.

The Hill Resource and Reference Guide series is a comprehensive and authoritative source of quality health research sources for both the layperson and medical health...

Cardiac Arrest

Cardiac Arrest

Ella Marley's world is shattered when a botched robbery costs her beloved older brother his life. She must try to move on while enduring a murder investigation that twists her emotions.
Detective Cory McCray couldn't help but be drawn to her the first time he set eyes on her in the hospital. He struggles to keep his feelings in check - he has a case to solve. But as the pieces come together, he wonders where she fits in - and if he is thinking with his head or his heart.
Cardiac Arrest is a quick, romantic read with a touch of mystery.

Cardiac Catheterization Handbook, 6e

Cardiac Catheterization Handbook, 6e
by Morton J. Kern MD MSCAI FAHA FACC (Author), Paul Sorajja MD (Author), Michael J Lim MD (Author)

This unique, easy-to-access handbook returns with enhanced coverage and clear instructions on what to expect, what to avoid, and how to manage complications in the cath lab. Ideal for cardiologists who need a quick clinical primer on cardiac catheterization, it offers easy access to information on the latest diagnostic and treatment advances necessary for optimal patient care. Straightforward, easy-to-understand approach and pocket-sized format are ideal for reference on the go.Covers vascular closure devices, radial artery catheterization, congenital heart disease, and drug-coated, carotid, and renal stenting.Focused update covers treatment protocols for every procedure you'll encounter, as well as the latest knowledge and clinical trials regarding recent scientific...

Manual of Perioperative Care in Adult Cardiac Surgery

Manual of Perioperative Care in Adult Cardiac Surgery
by Robert M. Bojar (Author)

The fifth edition of Bojar's Manual of Perioperative Care in Adult Cardiac Surgery remains the gold standard for management of adult patients undergoing cardiac surgery. The easily referenced outline format allows health practitioners of all levels to understand and apply basic concepts to patient care--perfect for cardiothoracic and general surgery residents, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, cardiologists, medical students, and critical care nurses involved in the care of both routine and complex cardiac surgery patients. This comprehensive guide features: Detailed presentation addressing all aspects of perioperative care for adult cardiac surgery patients Outline format allowing quick access to information Chronological approach to patient care starting with diagnostic tests...

ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support) Survival Card (4 card set- Large- 3.5x5.5 in., Laminated with hole punched)

ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support) Survival Card (4 card set- Large- 3.5x5.5 in., Laminated with hole punched)
by Marshall Dressel (Author)

Advanced Cardiac Life Support SURVIVAL CARD- 4 card set (Large 3.5x5.5 in., laminated with hole punched)--Information on front and back of 4 different cards.-- Six of the most commonly used algorithms: 1. Pulseless Arrest 2. BLS 3. Tachycardia w/pulse 4. Bradycardia 5. Acute Coronary Syndromes 6. Suspected Stroke-- Analysis of EKG leads & EKG basics-- EKG strips of 17 of the most important dysrhythmias-- Medications & treatment card to include dosages, indications, & precautions--------- When purchasing more than one item, my shipping and handling charge is 3.99, plus 1.00 per additional item. Amazon does not adjust, so I will refund you the difference.

© 2015