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Cardiopulmonary resuscitation for cardiac arrest: the importance of uninterrupted chest compressions in cardiac arrest resuscitation

      Abstract

      Over the last decade, the importance of delivering high-quality cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) for cardiac arrest patients has become increasingly emphasized. Many experts are in agreement concerning the appropriate compression rate, depth, and amount of chest recoil necessary for high-quality CPR. In addition to these factors, there is a growing body of evidence supporting continuous or uninterrupted chest compressions as an equally important aspect of high-quality CPR. An innovative resuscitation protocol, called cardiocerebral resuscitation, emphasizes uninterrupted chest compressions and has been associated with superior rates of survival when compared with traditional CPR with standard advanced life support. Interruptions in chest compressions during CPR can negatively impact outcome in cardiac arrest; these interruptions occur for a range of reasons, including pulse determinations, cardiac rhythm analysis, electrical defibrillation, airway management, and vascular access. In addition to comparing cardiocerebral resuscitation to CPR, this review article also discusses possibilities to reduce interruptions in chest compressions without sacrificing the benefit of these interventions.
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