First Aid Basics: How to perform CPR

CPR is the acronym for cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and it is used when a patient is unconscious, has stopped breathing and there is no pulse. Before starting CPR the following preparations are essential:

Perform a vital signs assessment:

  • Consciousness: talk, touch, pinch
  • Airways: Clear mouth, tilt head back
  • Breathing: Look, listen and feel
  • Circulation: Check pulse

The patient must be positioned on his/her back on a hard surface.

A bystander must be requested to call for professional help

The patients chest must be undressed.

You must locate the correct pressure point to administer compression’s.

  • Draw an imaginary line between the nipples,  and place the heel of the hand on the center of this line.
  • For infants draw the imaginary line between the nipples, place three fingers below the center of this line, lift the top finger off the babies chest, and administer the compression’s with two fingers.

Insure that the CPR is administered at the right pace and enough pressure is applied.

Age of Patient Pulse rate per minute Approximate depth of compression
Below 1 year 130-180 1-1.5 cm
1-6 years 110- 130 2-3 cm
7-12 years 90 – 110 3-4 cm
Above 12 years 60-90 4-5 cm

CPR: 2 artificial ventilations: 30 (15) chest compressions.

Run a full CABC Vitals check every minute and continue CPR until help arrives. There is not time limit. Patients have been revived after 90 minutes and longer. Remember that CPR takes priority over making emergency calls etc.

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