CPR Compression for an Adult.

The information posted in this blog on CPR for adults is for information purposes only. If you want to learn to do new CPR techniques take a CPR class with Vancouver First Aid Ltd.

Chest compression’s on adults has changed considerably in the last decade. The Lifesaving Society, Red Cross and Heart and Stroke Foundation receive there guidance from ILCOR which provides all the latest statistics and information on CPR.  With the information provided by ILCOR, all the major providers change there CPR standards every few years. Within the past 10 years, CPR landmarking or compression standards have changed at least 3 times.  All the major CPR providers put a lot of emphasis on changing there methods to keep CPR as simple and efficient as possible.

Ten years ago, land marking for chest compression’s was done by following the victims rib cage up to the xiphoid process (the little process below your sternum) and land marking two inches above that.  This land-marking method was the most complicated in the past ten years. With a victim being significantly overweight and wearing several articles of clothing, finding the xiphoid, was at times, difficult. For every minute going by without proper chest compression’s, the victims chances of recovery reduces drastically. Using a method of land marking that can be confusing and easy to miss reduces recovery rates and therefore was quickly removed as the land marking method for chest compression’s.

The method of land-marking for chest compression’s changed from using the xiphoid process to using a much easier method of land-marking. Following the xiphoid process method was using the victim’s armpit and moving towards the centre of the chest from there. In this method the rescuer would go up the victims body with there arm up into there armpit and move to the centre of the chest from there. This method is dramatically easier and significantly faster than the previous method. However, with the heart being only the size of your fist there isn’t much room for error. Using this armpit method was not as accurate, especially as the victim was larger in size and wearing more articles of clothing. This method lasted for several years until the method of land-marking changed again.

With the introduction of AED’s, rescuers were being told that they had to prepare there victims for an AED (automated external defibrillator). This meant that rescuers needed to expose the chest of the victim because the placement of an AED could only be on a bare chest. This meant that land-marking could now be accomplished using a visual land-marking system. Rescuers were now being told to land-mark between the victims nipples. This method proved to be the easiest and quickest method of land-marking. This improved the success rates of CPR as rescuers were became more confident with this easy method of landmarking and rescuers were becoming quicker.

Unfortunately, CPR land-marking for adults has changed again. The method of “between the nipples” was changed to the center of the chest. Rescuers are still required to expose the victims chest, however, they are required to land-mark at the center of the chest, instead of between the nipples. Land-marking changed to this method because, especially as victims got older, the nipples moved away from the center of the chest. This gave the possibility of rescuers doing chest compression’s on the wrong location. This slight change to land-marking on the center of the chest decreased the possibility of doing chest compression’s on the wrong location of the chest.

CPR will continue to change and rescuers need to embrace these changes as they increase the efficiency of chest compression’s and increase chances of recovery. If you want to learn to do Red Cross CPR take a first aid class with Vancouver First Aid Ltd.