Heart disease is the cause of slightly more than half of all out-of-hospital cardiovascular arrests. In the event of a cardiac arrest, it is possible to bring the victim back to life with the help of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). But what happens afterwards? Can consequential damage occur after resuscitation? We have taken a closer look at the consequences of resuscitation.
In which situations is resuscitation necessary?
Resuscitation, or cardiopulmonary resuscitation, is required in the event of cardiovascular arrest. Through resuscitation, a person’s cardiopulmonary circulation can be reactivated and thus revived. Various causes can lead to situations in which people suffer a cardiac arrest. In many cases, pre-existing conditions are responsible, some of which are previously undetected. But cardiac arrest can also occur in serious accidents or drowning.
What consequences can occur after resuscitation?
The longer the victim’s heart does not beat and the longer the body is not supplied with oxygen, the greater the damage can be after resuscitation. After only 10 seconds without oxygen in the body, our brain begins to stop the most important functions. This has the effect of making you unconscious. The reason for this is that the nerve cells begin to use much less oxygen and to use it sparingly.
After approximately 30 seconds, the so-called gasping respiration or respiratory arrest occurs. This is because gasping is not a sign that the victim is breathing on his or her own. On the contrary, gasping is a signal for nerve cell dysfunction. After about 3 minutes, our nerve cells in the brain slowly begin to die. From the 5th minute onwards, more severe damage can occur in the area of the brain, which is most evident as consequential damage after resuscitation. Unfortunately, the brain is the organ that cannot last long without oxygen. Other organs, on the other hand, can survive 30 minutes to several hours without oxygen.
So it is clear that the first minutes after a cardiovascular arrest are crucial. The longer the affected person is without oxygen, the greater the consequential damage can be after resuscitation. The correct application of cardiopulmonary resuscitation can not only save lives, but also prevent further consequential damage.
How to performe resuscitation correctly: Instructions
If you find yourself in an emergency where a person suffers a cardiac arrest, you should perform resuscitation. This is done using cardiopulmonary resuscitation. For the instructions, we distinguish between two different area.
The aim of cardiac massage is to get the heart beating again. You can only do this if you follow the instructions for chest compressions correctly:
- First, kneel next to the affected person at about the level of the rib cage.
- Then place the heel of one hand on the centre of the chest.
- Then place the heel of the other hand on top of the first hand.
- Then you start the so-called cardiac massage. With your arms outstretched, place your own weight on the chest of the victim and begin to press down vertically 30 times to a depth of 6 cm.
- The frequency of chest compressions is important and should be between 100 and 120 beats per minute.
In addition to cardiac massage, the aim of rescue breathing is to restore oxygen to the victim. This combination should ultimately succeed in resuscitating the victim.
- To administer oxygen, the victim’s head is leaned back and the chin is raised to expose the airway.
- Then take the index finger and thumb of the hand closer to the victim’s forehead and close the nose.
- Afterwards, the chin of the patient is raised and the mouth is opened.
- Now one breathes in normally and puts one’s own lips completely over the victim’s lips.
- Then blow out the inhaled air for about 1 second. The victim’s chest should rise slightly.
- Finally, turn your own head to the side to breathe in new air. The victim’s chest should lower again. Then repeat the previous step once more, for a total of 2 times.
- Cardiac massage and breathing must be alternated. Start with cardiac massage (30x) and then switch to breathing (2x). Repeat this procedure until the rescuers arrive.
- If resuscitation was successful and the victim is breathing on his/her own again, place the victim in the recovery position.
Emergency app for first aid
Are you also unsure about the instructions for resuscitation? Then you are not alone in this. Many people do not want to do anything wrong due to uncertainty in an emergency situation and then hold back. Others, however, are unable to help due to a state of shock. But not giving first aid would be the only mistake you can make. To get further help, you can simply use an emergency app like our TarisApp.
With the TarisApp, you can make an emergency call immediately via an app on your mobile phone. On the other hand, you can use the TarisApp to ask for professional medical help in the area. Medically trained personnel in the neighbourhood will then receive a notification that an emergency is close by. This way, even if you are unsure, you can quickly arrange for the right measures to be taken. After all, did you know that it takes the emergency services an average of 15 minutes to arrive at the scene of an emergency? You can find out more about this right here.
- The First Aid ABC and ABCDE: What’s behind them?
- First aid: what to do when help is needed?
- Anatomy of the heart: how does our heart really work?
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