Today the American Heart Association issued new guidelines for cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR).
Instead of remembering A-B-C –A for airways, B for breathing and C for compressions. It’s now C-A-B. In other words, you start with compressions, then check the airways, then administer mouth-to-mouth breathing.So rather than first establishing that the airway is clear, start doing compressions right away. Then check the airway and then do mouth-to-mouth. The new guidelines apply to everyone except for newborns.
“By starting with chest compressions, that’s easy to remember, and for many victims that alone will be lifesaving,” Dr. Michael R. Sayre, chair of the emergency cardiovascular care committee for the American Heart Association, told WebMD.
Apparently, the old A-B-C approach was causing delays for chest compressions which is important to keep blood circulating.
The new guidelines may inspire more people to perform CPR. “Mouth to mouth is hard if you’re not trained. Anybody can do chest compressions, whether they have had a class or not. Good chest compressions really help save lives,” said Dr. Sayre.
Here is a step-by-step guide for the new CPR. Even if you’re already certified in CPR, it’s not a bad idea to take a refresher course. I know I could use one.