News

Don't forget CPR!

Wednesday, June 03, 2015

There are more and more AED’s available these days in sporting clubs, and other public venues, and this is bringing to light something that has always worried me.

That is, quality of CPR is completely under-rated in general public perception.

Many people think that if someone has a cardiac arrest, an AED is the be-all and end-all. They rush out and buy the cheapest AED with nary a thought about the constraints of an AED, or what an AED actually does.

Others know that CPR is important. Trouble is they don’t know whether their CPR is effective at the time. Notwithstanding the ARC statement that any attempt is better than no attempt, often you only know your CPR wasn’t effective when it is too late!

With more AED’s available, we sometimes hear of situations where an AED is used, and the person does not survive.

When the heart is in fibrillation, there is no blood flow, and no blood pressure. This means there is no oxygen distribution to the vital organs. If the heart is in a non-shockable rhythm (about half of all cardiac arrests) the defibrillator quite literally cannot do a thing! From a lay-rescuer perspective, only high quality CPR can keep the person alive until the paramedics arrive. They have the ability to commence other medical interventions….interventions that will only be effective if high quality CPR has been taking place in the meantime.

In witnessed cardiac arrest, there is oxygen in the bloodstream, but it needs to be distributed to the vital organs - to the brain in particular. How? By doing high quality chest compressions to keep that pump going!

People say, Oh, our AED tells us whether we are doing good compressions! That’s great, but I ask the question, how does it do that? If you are just pressing on an accelerometer, or sensor placed in the middle of the chest, I guarantee there is nothing clinical about the feedback you are getting. On the other hand, if it works by taking continuous ICG signals, correlated to blood-flow, then you are onto a winner.

We like to practise what we preach. HeartSine Technologies have seen this need and developed a technology incorporated into an AED, the samaritan 500P, which will determine whether your chest compressions are clinically effective. This is specific to the victim.

Studies have shown that there is a huge difference in force required to generate effective blood flow during CPR. Just think about it. Some people are as strong as an ox, and you have to compress their heart between their chest and spine sufficiently to get blood flow. Other people are slightly built, and therefore will not require the same force to generate perfusion (oxygen supply via the blood) to the vital organs. The technology incorporated in the samaritan 500P determines this and gets you to push harder as appropriate. Although you are taught what to do in a CPR course, a very necessary skill to learn, these realities come to play when you are doing CPR in real life!

Having proved the benefits of this technology with lives saved many times, we urge you to see for yourself how good this technology is. Please contact us with any questions that you might have about how this unique patented technology works.

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