For sudden cardiac arrest, recent studies have established the use of compression only CPR as an alternative to conventional CPR, which combines chest compressions and rescue breaths. The immediate use of continuous chest compressions for a witnessed sudden collapse of an adult patient could significantly increase the chance of surviving sudden cardiac arrest.
It is important to note that compression only CPR is not recommended for children and infants, adults discovered unresponsive, and non-heart-related arrests such as drowning victims, and persons suffering from a drug overdose.
By eliminating the apprehension associated with doing rescue breaths, compression only CPR may encourage more bystanders to take action and attempt CPR when an adult collapse is witnessed. A patient who is unresponsive and not breathing has no chance for survival without help. Nothing the bystander can do can possibly harm the patient further.
Regardless of the approach, high-quality chest compressions with as few interruptions as possible help keep blood pumping from the heart to the lungs and brain, increasing the odds of successful resuscitation. Once started, either approach to CPR needs to be provided with minimal interruption until another provider takes over; the patient responds; an AED is available for use; or EMS providers can take over.
Training programs offered through the Health & Safety Institute follow science treatment recommendations and guidelines based on the current American Heart Association Guidelines for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) and Emergency Cardiovascular Care (ECC).