When someone's blood flow or breathing stops, seconds count. Permanent brain damage or death can happen quickly. If you know how to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), you could save a life. CPR is an emergency procedure for a person whose heart has stopped or is no longer breathing. CPR can maintain circulation and breathing until emergency medical help arrives.
Even if you haven't had training, you can do "hands-only" CPR for a teen or adult whose heart has stopped beating ("hands-only" CPR isn't recommended for children). "Hands-only" CPR uses chest compressions to keep blood circulating until emergency help arrives. If you've had training, you can use chest compressions, clear the airway, and do rescue breathing. Rescue breathing helps get oxygen to the lungs for a person who has stopped breathing. To keep your skills up, you should repeat the training every two years.
Statistics and Research
- CPR Facts and Stats (American Heart Association)
- ClinicalTrials.gov: Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (National Institutes of Health)