Friday, March 16, 2007

Heart attack? Forget the mouth-to-mouth: study

Interesting article I saw today. Can't wait to hear the experts views on this.

Heart attack? Forget the mouth-to-mouth: study

Thu Mar 15, 8:03 PM ET

PARIS (AFP) - The chances of surviving a heart attack outside a hospital double if a bystander performs chest-compressions but omits the mouth-to-mouth resuscitation widely regarded as part of standard rescue procedure, according to a study released Friday.

Nearly everyone has witnessed the scene dozens of times on television, and perhaps a time or two in real life: someone, mostly likely a man getting on in years, collapses to the pavement clutching his chest.

A take-charge passerby drops to his side, pinches the victim's nose and begins mouth-to-mouth resuscitation, alternating this treatment by pushing repeatedly and vigorously on his chest.

But there is something wrong with this textbook picture of CPR -- shorthand for cardio-pulmonary resuscitation -- according to the study, published in the British journal The Lancet: it does more harm than good.

Not only is there "no evidence for any benefit from the addition of mouth-to-mouth ventilation," writes Ken Nagao, a doctor at the Nihon University hospital in Tokyo who led the study of more than 4000 heart arrest cases in the Kanto area of Japan.

The chances of surviving with a "favorable neurological outcome" are twice as high when would-be rescuers skip the mouth-to-mouth and focus exclusively on trying to revive the heart by rhythmic chest-compressions.

"This finding ... should lead to a prompt interim revision of the guidelines for out-of-hospital cardiac arrest," wrote Gordon Ewy, director of the University of Arizona's Sarver Heart Center, in a commentary.

Read the article here:


TESS said...

Good Infor! Thanks for the heads up.

Cindy said...

I'll be curious if they change the protocol now.

Fat Victoria said...

Never. It's the same as the overwhelming evidence for low-carb. They haven't changed the guidelines there and they won't here either.

Cindy said...

I don't know Victoria. They ahve changed the guidelines over the years. Also, remember, so many people are reluctant to do CPR due to the mouth-to-mouth part and fear of "catching something". If they eliminate that part, people may be more willing to attempt resucitation.

I'll let you know anyway....I should hear about this in work.