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First-Aid for Cardiac Arrest

CARDIAC ARREST (UNDER 1 YEAR )

Description : A life-threatening condition when the heart stops beating.

What you need to know : 

  • The procedures for cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) described below are not a substitute for CPR training CPR training is necessary to perform these procedures most effectively and safely.
  • If choking is the cause of breathing difficulty, follow the procedures for Choking

When to get help : 

  • If you are not alone, immediately have one person call your local emergency number while another person begins CPR.
  • If you are alone, shout HELP If you are trained in CPR, administer CPR for about 1 minute, then call your local emergency number.
  • If you are alone and trained in CPR, immediately call your local emergency number emergency personnel will tell you what to do.

Treatment : 

  1. Rub your infant back or tap her shoulder to determine whether she is conscious.
  2. If the infant does not respond, turn her on her back onto a hard surface. Turn your infant as a unit keeping her back in a straight line, firmly supporting her head and neck. Expose her chest.
  3. Life your infant chin while tilting her head back to move her tongue away from her windpipe. If you suspect a spinal injury, pull your infant jaw forward without moving her head or neck. Do not let her mouth close.
  4. Place your ear close to your infant mouth and watch for chest movement. For 5 seconds, look, listen, and feel for breathing.
  5. If your infant is not breathing begin rescue breathing as follows : Maintain her head position and cover her mouth and nose tightly with your mouth. Give 2 slow, gentle breath, each lasting 1 to 1.5  seconds. Pause between the 2 breaths to take a deep breath.
  6. If you do not see your infant chest rise, reposition her head and give 2 more breaths. If her chest still does not rise, her airway is obstructed.
  7. If you do see your infant chest rise, place two finger on the inside of her upper arm, just above the elbow. Squeeze gently to feel her pulse for 5-10 seconds.
  8. If your infant has a pulse, give 1 breath every 3 seconds. Check her pulse after every 20 breaths ( each minute ). After 1 minute, call your local emergency number. Resume giving breaths and checking the pulse.
  9. If your infant has no pulse, begin chest compressions, as follows : Maintain her head position and place 2 fingers on the middle of her breastbone, just below her nipples. Within 3 seconds, quickly press your fingers down 1/3 to 1/2 inch the depth of her chest 5 times. Give the compressions in a smooth, rhythmic manner, keeping your fingers on her chest.
  10. Give your infant 1 breath, followed by 5 chest compressions. Repeat this sequence 10 times. Recheck your infant pulse for 5-10 seconds.
  11. Repeat steps 10 until your infant pulse resumes or help arrives. If your infant pulse resumes, go to step 8.

Caution

  • Do not give chest compressions if there is a heartbeat; doing so may cause the heart to stop beating.
  • If you suspect a spinal injury, do not move your infant head or neck to check for breathing

CARDIAC ARREST ( 1 TO 8 YEARS )

Description : A life-threatening condition when the heart stops due to breathing emergency or other situation.

What you need to know : 

  • The procedures for cardiopulmonary resuscitation ( CPR ) described below are not substitute for CPR training. CPR training is necessary to perform these procedures most effectively and safely.
  • If choking is the cause of breathing difficulty, follow the procedures for Choking,

When to get help : 

  • If you are not alone, have one person call your local emergency number, while another person begins CPR.
  • If you are alone, shout HELP If you are trained in CPR, administer CPR for about 1 minute, then call your local emergency number.
  • If you are alone and not trained in CPR, immediately call your local emergency number emergency personnel will tell you what to do.

Treatment : 

  1. Tap or shake your child gently and call his name to determine consciousness.
  2. If your child does not respond, turn him on his back onto a hard surface. Turn your child as a unit, keeping his back in a straight line, firmly supporting his head and neck. Expose his chest.
  3. Life your child chin while tilting his head back to move his tongue away from his windpipe. If you suspect a spinal injury, pull your child jaw forward without moving his head or neck. Do not let his mouth close.
  4. Place your ear close to your child mouth and watch for chest movement. For 5 seconds, look, listen, and feel for breathing.
  5. If your child is not breathing, begin rescue breathing, as follows : Maintain his head position, close his nostrils by pinching them with your thumb and index finger, and cover his mouth tightly with your mouth. Give 2 slow, full breaths. Pause between the 2 breaths to take a deep breath.
  6. If you do not see your child chest rise, reposition his head and give 2 more breaths. If his chest still does not rise, his airway is obstructed.
  7. If you do see your child chest rise, place 2 fingers on his Adam apple. Slide your fingers into the groove between the Adam apple and the muscle on the side of his neck to feel his pulse for 5-10 seconds.
  8. If your child has a pulse, give 1 breath every 4 seconds. Check his pulse after every 15 breaths. After 1 minute, call your local emergency number. Resume giving breaths and checking the pulse.
  9.  If your child has no pulse, begin chest copressions as follows : Maintain his head position and place the heel of your hand 2 finger widths above the lowest notch of his breastbone. Lean your shoulder over your hand and within 4 seconds, quickly press down 1/3 to 1/2 inch the depth of his chest 5 times. Give the compressions in a smooth, rhythmic manner, keeping your hand on his chest.
  10. Give your child 1 breath, followed by 5 chest compressions. Repeat this sequence 10 times. Recheck his pulse for 5-10 seconds.
  11. Repeat Step 10 until your child pulse resumes or help arrives. If pulse resumes, go to step 8.

Caution : 

  • Do not give chest compressions if there is a heartbeat; doing so many cause the heart to stop beating.
  • If you suspect a spinal injury, do not move your child head or neck to check for breathing.

CARDIAC ARREST ( OVER 8 YEARS )

Description : A life-threatening condition when the heart stops due to breathing emergency or other situation.

What you need to know : 

  • The procedures for cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) described below are not a substitute for CPR training. CPR training is necessary to perform these procedures most effectively and safely.
  • If choking is the cause of breathing difficulty, follow procedures for choking.

When to get help : 

  • If you are not alone, have one person call your local emergency number while another person begins CPR.
  •  If you are alone, shout HELP If you are trained in CPR, administer CPR for about 1 minute, then call your local emergency number.
  • If you are alone and not trained in CPR, immediately call your local emergency number personnel will tell you what to do.

Treatment :

  1. Tap or shake your child gently, and call her name to determine consciousness.
  2. If your child does not respond, turn her on her back onto a hard surface. Turn your child as a unit, keeping her back in a straight line, firmly supporting her head and neck. Expose her chest.
  3. Life your child chin while tilting her head back to move her tongue away from her windpipe. If you suspect a spinal injury, pull your child jaw forward without moving her head or neck. Do not let her mouth close.
  4. Place your ear close to your child mouth and watch for chest movement. For 5 seconds, look, listen, and feel for breathing.
  5. If your child is not breathing, begin rescue breathing, as follows : Maintain her head position, close her nostrils by pinching them with your thumb and index finger, and cover her mouth tightly with your mouth. Give 2 slow, full breaths. Pause between the 2 breaths to take a deep breath.
  6. If you do not see your child chest rise, reposition her head and give 2 more breaths. If her chest still does not rise, her airway is obstructed.
  7. If you do see your child chest rise, place 2 fingers on her Adam apple. Slide your fingers into the groove between the Adam apple and the muscle on the side of her neck to feel her pulse for 5-10 seconds.
  8. If your child has a pulse, give 1 breath every 5 seconds. Check her pulse after every 12 breaths. After 1 minute, call your local emergency number. Resume the breaths and pulse checks.
  9. If your child has no pulse, begin chest compressions as follows : Maintain her head position and place the heel of your hand 2 finger-widths above the lowest notch of her breastbone. Place the heel of your other hand directly over the heel of the first hand. Interlock your fingers; do not let them touch your child chest. Lean your shoulder over your hands, and within 10 seconds quickly press down 1/3 to 1/2 inch the depth of her chest 15 times. Give the compressions in a smooth, rhythmic manner, keeping your hands on her chest.
  10. Give your child 2 breaths, followed by 15 chest compressions. Repeat this sequence 4 times. Recheck her pulse for 5-10 seconds.
  11. Repeat Step 10 units your child pulse resumes or help arrives. If her pulse resumes, go to Step 8.

Caution : 

  • Do not give chest compressions if there is a heartbeat; doing so may cause the heart to stop beating.
  • If you suspect a spinal injury, do not move your child head or neck to check for breathing.

Breakthroughs that May Save Your Life

Except for the time he had his toncils out as a kid, Howard Kubitz, 63, had never been hospitalised. So when he suffered a stroke on August 10, 1998, the paralysis that seized the right side of his body was matched only by the fear that life,as he knew it, was over. He was already picturing himself confined to a wheelchair or spending the rest of his days in a nursing home.

The stakes were very high, says Dr. Steven Goldstein, the neurologist who treated Kubitz in the emergency room at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Centre. If he had remained in that state, he would have been severely disabled. To many people, that a fate worse than death.

Fortunately for Kubitz, his doctors examined him with a state-of-the-art diagnostic tool that indicated the severity of his stroke and showed precisely where the flow of blood to his brain was interrupted. With that information, they determined it was safe to go ahead and give him tPA, the saME clot-busting drug used to stop heart attacks. Less than two hours later, Kubitz was almost back to normal.

STROKE

Super Scan 

To gauge the severity of Kubitz condition, his doctors peered into his brain with a xenon CT scan, a technique that dramatically improves physicians ability to see the effects of stroke a third leading cause of death and a major cause of disability. Xenon computed tomography not only takes a picture of the brain, as does a traditional CT  scan, but also allows doctors to measure exactly how much blood is flowing to different parts of the brain.

How it works

A patient inhales harmless nonradioactive xenon gas, which is tracked by a scanner as it enters the brain. It takes only minutes for the gas to saturate the brain tissue, showing the stroke exact location and how much blood is reaching key areas.

The clot-buster tPA, if given within three hours of a brain attack can work wonders in people whose stroke was caused by blood clots. But one major side-effect of tPA is brain haemorrhage, which can be fatal. With the precise information revealed in a xenon CT scan, doctors can more accurately determine which patients are at increased risk of haemorrhage, and who can sefety be given the drug.

Is it available 

About 30 major medical centres in the United States have xenon CT technology. Dr. Howard Yonas, the University of Pittsburgh neurosurgeon who was instrumental in developing the technique, estimates that within a few years, one in four American hospitals may be using the xenon CT scan in their emergency rooms.

However, xenon CT scan technology is still not available in India.

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