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Cardiac Arrest

In Canada there are in excess of 40,000 annual cardiac arrests. Unfortunately, survival remains low following both out-of-hospital and in-hospital cardiac arrest, and many premature deaths are believed to be preventable. Studies have shown that high-quality chest compressions are key to survival, and the American Heart Association has summarized the need for: 1) adequate compression depth 2) adequate compression rate 3) avoiding leaning 4) minimizing interruptions 5) and minimizing chest rise. However, both laypersons and professionals are failing to reliably achieve these recommendations. Several devices (which provide real-time visual and audio feedback) have been developed with the goal of improving performance. Voice advisory manikins and motion capture technology utilize accelerometer technology and infrared sensors. Portable devices- including the CPREzyTM, PocketCPRTM, and CPRmeterTM- use accelerometer or pressure sensor technology. A number of defibrillators have been modified to provide real-time feedback. Recently, two applications, iCPR and PocketCPR, have been developed to capitalize on the ubiquity and familiarity of smartphones. These novel devices have shown the potential to improve the quality of chest compressions. What is needed is further research (and development) into how to translate these exciting opportunities into improved survival following cardiac arrest. Peter G Brindley, Improving Chest Compressions Following Cardiac Arrest: Pushing Ahead
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Last date updated on June, 2014

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