CPR is the first step in any resuscitation attempt. In the UK, almost 200 people every day will suffer a sudden cardiac arrest out of hospital. When someone has a cardiac arrest, they are not breathing normally and their heart has stopped beating effectively. Without treatment, this person will die, usually within minutes. Early CPR and defibrillation is lifesaving and gives them the best chance of survival.
Using a defibrillator is the best next step in lifesaving . An AED (defibrillator), when connected to the patient's chest correctly, will determine the heart rhythm and decide if shocking the heart will be of benefit. In the first few minutes following an SCA, the heart is in a rhythm known as Ventricular Fibrillation (VF) and is not beating nor providing any output to the circulatory system. An AED may interrupt this rhythm and allow the heart to restore to its normal beating rhythm.
Approx 25% of out of hospital cardiac arrests occur in a public place.
Only approx 20% are still in a shockable rhythm when the ambulance arrives.
Survival is greatly improved if bystander cpr and an aed is administered.
Less than 20% of surveyed population say they feel confident to administer CPR.
Ventricular Fibrillation (VF) is the sudden disruption of the heart’s normal rhythm resulting in the heart failing to pump blood. The heart wobbles or ‘fibrillates’ instead of pumping – blood flow is zero.
The victim becomes unconscious and will die if not treated very quickly. That lifesaving treatment is defibrillation used in conjunction with CPR.