Thursday, April 03, 2008

If you answer to Lowdenclear ...

... then you'd probably better not read this!

My long suffering fiancée puts up with my cooking, sense of humour and funny moods (which she even says aren't grumpy) but some of my first-aid related stories she can do without. Fair enough; if you're her, then, maybe darling, you might prefer to skip this short entry. Someone suggested that chest-compression only CPR (in suspected cardiac arrest patients i.e. neither paediatric nor drowning) might be of more benefit than mouth to mouth and compressions. So far so good, especially as I wouldn't do mouth-to-mouth if you paid me! (Mouth to mask, that's a different, no vomitus in my oral cavity sort of game!!)

However, the American author of the above-linked article suggests aiming your compressions between the patient's nipples. That's just silly. The sternum or breastbone is a fixed point, running from a hollow at the top of the stomach up to a hollow at the bottom of the neck. But just you try to aim "between the nipples" of a 55 year old woman carrying a few extra pounds. Then try it when you've cut her clothing away to facilitate placing AED pads. (Remember ILCOR 2005 says 1 shock then CPR for 5 cycles or 2 minutes, then another shock.) You'd be trying chest compressions somewhere around her waist! Then try it on an obese 75 year-old male with man-breasts!

Finally if you haven't had any training in CPR don't expect to able to do anything at all - no training tends to mean lots of fear, some panic and a total freeze. If, on the other hand, you want to know what to do and how to do it in such a situation, follow the link in my sidebar!

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