A heart attack is not the same thing as a cardiac arrest. Heart attack victims normally are able to talk and many are in pain. Cardiac arrest victims are non-responsive, clinically dead, and are either not breathing normally – or they might be gasping.
CPR is not used on heart attack victims. CPR is only used on cardiac arrest victims
CPR does not usually re-start hearts – It tries to keep the heart muscle and brain alive, and it delays the transition from a shockable rhythm to a non-shockable one. This transition drops your chance of survival seven-fold. It usually takes an AED and drugs to re-start the heart, and sooner is a lot better!
Eighty-five percent of all cardiac arrests occur in a private residence. The witness, if there is one, is usually about the same age as the victim. Heel Compression quadruples the number of people who can perform guideline-compliant chest compression ("GC3’s") for ten minutes.
If there is nobody in your home that weighs enough to perform 2" deep chest compression until the ambulance crew is "hands-on" you really ought to consider purchasing a personal AED for home and travel use. My wife and I have one. (SLICC will be running another AED Group Purchase this fall. Let firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to learn the details when the program is beginning. SLICC does not profit from this program.)
Your ability to perform GC3’s for ten minutes does not depend upon your strength, it depends upon the stiffness of the victim’s chest, your weight and weight distribution, and the method of chest compression you use.
The three largest flaws in how Bystander CPR is performed are:
- Leaning i.e., leaving too much force on the breastbone at top of the “full recoil" stroke. Leaning keeps dead people dead.
- Very rapid chest compression - 120-150 compressions per minute was common in the nearly 400 EMS workers measured. Compressions in excess of 120 per minute reduce the probability of victims’ survival.
- Compressions that are too shallow reduce the probability of victims’ survival.
Please watch the video at http://www.slicc.org/ClassVideo