Study: Hands-Only CPR encourages bystander assistance

A new study published by the American Heart Association shows that hands-only CPR encourages cardiac arrest help

By EMS1 Staff

DALLAS — A new study from the American Heart Association shows an increase in bystander CPR for cardiac arrest victims with the elimination of mouth-to-mouth steps.

Published in AHA’s Circulation magazine, the study found that bystander CPR rates rose from 40.8% to 68.2% over a 10-year period after compression-only guidelines were adopted.

“CPR in its simplest form is just chest compressions,” Dr. Gabriel Riva, a Ph.D. student at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden and the study's lead author, said in a news release. “Doing only chest compressions doubles the chance of survival compared to doing nothing.”

The 2015 AHA guidelines includes Hands-Only CPR as an option for bystanders when confronted with a cardiac arrest victim, though still recommend compression and rescue breaths for children.

“Bystander have an important role in out-of-hospital cardiac arrest,” Riva said. “Their actions can be lifesaving.”

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