Not All CPR Is Equal
Written by Editor   
Tuesday, November 18, 2014 01:56 PM

The effectiveness of performing cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) in cardiac arrest cases may have influenced the outcomes in one clinical trial, researchers suggested.  Only about 40% of patients in the trial who performed CPR were guideline compliant in delivering proper compression rate, compression depth and compression fraction.  Research suggested that while performing chest compression at a rate of 80 to 120 compressions a minute was within guidelines, the failure to compress to a depth of more than 4-6 centimeters would make the number of compressions performed moot.  Similarly, if the compression fraction was less than 50% it would negate the compression rate and compression depth. All three factors had to be within guidelines in order to have quality CPR.

"The quality of CPR deliver to a cardiac arrest patient is an important national healthcare issue and may be an underappreciated effect modified in CPR clinical trials. Consideration of these observations is important for the appropriate design and execution of future resuscitation research, the interpretation of previous CPR studies and clinical resuscitation practice."

"In teaching residents and interns about CPR we constantly stress the quality of CPR for improving outcomes. One of the key factors in doing CPR is the compression fraction – the time one spends actually performing the compressions. We know that stopping compressions is bad for outcomes; it is a dominant effect for negative outcomes."  By pausing compression, blood flow stops and it requires the doctor or bystander to get back to where they were before the pause. "You have to re-prime the pump."