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An Invaluable Investment

By: Sarah Rickert
By: Sarah Rickert

Although it was too late to revive the three little girls in Unity, EMT's say their mother did the right thing by calling 9-1-1 and starting CPR.

Safety experts say knowing CPR is one of the best tools a parent can have. Accidents can happen at any time and trained professionals are not always around when they happen. That's why it's crucial you know what to do if someone is not breathing.

After six minutes brain damage starts and after 10 minutes the damage is permanent. EMT's say it makes a big difference if someone has CPR in progress when they get to the scene.

If you're interested in taking classes, contact your local fire department, hospital or technical college.

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CPR Facts

  • Sudden cardiac arrest is the leading cause of death in adults. Most arrests occur in persons with underlying heart disease.

  • CPR doubles a person's chance of survival from sudden cardiac arrest.

  • Seventy-five percent of all cardiac arrests happen in people's homes.

  • The typical victim of cardiac arrest is a man in his early 60's and a woman in her late 60's.

  • Cardiac arrest occurs twice as frequently in men compared to women.

  • CPR was invented in 1960.

  • There has never been a case of HIV transmitted by mouth-to-mouth CPR.

  • In sudden cardiac arrest the heart goes from a normal heartbeat to a quivering rhythm called ventricular fibrillation (VF). This happens in approximately 2/3 of all cardiac arrests. VF is fatal unless an electric shock, called defibrillation, can be given. CPR does not stop VF but CPR extends the window of time in which defibrillation can be effective.

  • CPR provides a trickle of oxygenated blood to the brain and heart and keeps these organs alive until defibrillation can shock the heart into a normal rhythm.

  • If CPR is started within four minutes of collapse and defibrillation provided within 10 minutes a person has a 40 percent chance of survival.

Source: www.learncpr.org contributed to this report.


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