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A Pioneer of CPR Passes Away

Dr. James Jude, recognized for his research in developing cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), passed away on Tuesday, July 28.

Dr. Jude’s contributions to cardiothoracic medicine has revolutionized the way we save lives. In 1953, Dr. Jude began as a resident at John Hopkin’s University. At the time, he was studying how to prolong hypothermia in dogs, a process to cool the body’s core temperature. This proved difficult, as prolonged hypothermia would cause the heart to stop beating.

To combat this issue, Dr. Jude sought the assistance of Dr. William Kouwenhoven and his doctoral student, Guy Knickerbocker. Kouwenhoven and Knickerbocker were developing an external defibrillator that could be used outside the hospital.

During some experiments, Knickerbocker noticed that when he placed the heavy copper electrodes on the dog’s chest, the arterial pressure would increase. This finding led the three to collaborate further to develop external cardiac massage – now known as chest compressions.

By 1958, they found that by simply doing chest compressions, they could extend the window of successful defibrillation from one minute thirty seconds to 10 minutes or beyond. “We got it up to 10 minutes…20 minutes,” Dr. Jude said, “Practically as long as we had the energy to [compress on the chest].”

Before long, Jude, Kouwenhoven, and Knickerbocker were teaching CPR and creating films. CPR’s adaptation spread quickly across the world over the next few years and quickly became adopted by the American Heart Association.

As Dr. Jude once stated, “The beauty of this whole thing is that you can keep the brain alive for a period of time without anything – just yourself, until you can get a defibrillator.”

Over 50 years ago, resuscitation attempts only occurred in the hospital. Since Jude, Kouwenhoven, and Knickerbocker’s contributions to discovering chest compressions, anyone can learn CPR to save a life. Register for a class at Lifesaver Education to learn this simple lifesaving skill.

CPR Saves Lives - And You Can Too

CPR and First Aid are skills anyone can learn that can save lives in a matter of seconds.  When fifty-eight-year-old bus driver, Susan Lecrenski, encountered a student with a life-threatening allergic reaction, she used the skills she learned in First Aid to use an Epi Pen to save the student's life.  American Red-Cross honored Lecrenski as a Hometown Hero.  Lecrenski voiced, "I hope my story raises some awareness because a lot of bus comapnies don't make CPR, First-Aid and Epi-pen training mandatory.  It should be.  Drivers should know how to use these things if the need arises."

CPR and First Aid skills can also be just as valuable to teens as adults.  While shopping at Walmart, seventeen-year-old Abby Snodgrass heard a cry for help when an 11-month infant stopped breathing.  She responded to the call, and put her newly learned CPR skills to the test.  "I remember thinking as I'm doing the compressions, 'What if this doesn't work?' But I had to put it out of my mind... I can't explain how happy I was when she started to breathe."

Responding appropriately in an emergency situation is critical and knowing the correct procedures can save lives.  Lifesaver Education offers courses on CPR, First Aid and BLS.  Our experienced instructors work hard to help you master life saving skills.  Just like Susan Lecrenski and Abby Snodgrass, you too can have the knowledge of CPR and save a life.  Register for a class today, and let us help you discover your potential.

Have an Hour? Learn How to Save a Life!

Do you have the skills it takes to save a life? According to the American Heart Association, the majority of Americans don't know how to perform CPR -- or don’t know how to perform it correctly. The American Heart Association has long been a proponent of CPR education for people of all ages and has been actively pursuing compulsory training for high school students across the US. CPR and safety advocates hope that Florida will join the other Southern states in making resuscitation training mandatory for high school students.

One hour of training delivers a lifetime of results:

While the effects of CPR training can be life altering – even kids trained in emergency resuscitation efforts can provide lifesaving care in an emergency – it doesn’t take long to learn. Most teens and adults can acquire the skills needed to correctly perform CPR in about an hour, according to the American Heart Association. While you can’t become certified in an hour, the hands on training needed to become comfortable with compressions and coping with an emergency can be a true lifesaver.

Familiarity increases comfort and skill:

The chance to spend some time learning in a classroom setting with realistic CPR dummies boosts confidence and skills in a short period of time. CPR mannequins come in a variety of sizes and allow kids and teens the chance to practice skills in a real life setting without the pressure of an emergency situation. Learning the correct technique and the proper tempo and rhythm using a mannequin builds confidence and will hopefully create a generation of kids equipped with useful, lifesaving skills.

The life you save may be someone you know

Heart disease remains the leading cause of death for Americans, and most people experiencing heart problems do so in their own homes. The ability to perform basic lifesaving tasks could help cut down on the number of tragedies in Florida – one of the worst states in the nation for heart related deaths – and in other locations as well.

The skills needed to save a life can be acquired in a shockingly short amount of time and provide a lifetime of benefits for the entire family. If you are ready to become one of the competent 30% who know how to act quickly and save a life in the event of an emergency, the experts at LifesaverEd.com are ready to help you get started. Contact us or follow our blog for the latest in heart health and safety. 

Why is CPR Important?

Almost everyone has seen CPR performed in a TV show and knows that it can save a life after heart attack, smoke inhalation, drowning, and other accidents. Unlike many other aspects of TV drama, the lifesaving potential of CPR is very real. While the process may not always be depicted 100% accurately, CPR does dramatically increase the chances of survival and can even bring someone back from death.

The benefits of CPR are best illustrated by a real-life program in Sweden. Volunteers trained in CPR receive a text message whenever a cardiac arrest is reported within 500 meters of the volunteer. This allows a volunteer to get to the patient within just a couple of minutes while emergency responders may still be fighting traffic. The likelihood of survival drops 10% every minute, and the program has saved countless lives.

While there are no similar programs in the United States, few cardiac arrests happen without bystanders nearby. Unfortunately, CPR is often not administered because bystanders either don't know what to do or are reluctant to perform mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. The process actually provides two life-saving steps. The compressions work to restart the heart and to keep blood flowing while it is stopped. The breathing returns oxygen to the patient's lungs and helps them start breathing on their own again. It's important for the public to know that chest compressions alone can still dramatically increase survival chances.

All Los Angeles residents should consider taking a CPR class. Knowing CPR could very well save a loved one when seconds count and the paramedics are minutes away. Knowing CPR could also be considered similar to blood donation — you never know when you will need it, so helping to increase the number of people who know CPR and are willing to perform it could end up saving your own life. Contact us today to sign up for a Los Angeles CPR course.

Medical Students Want More Resuscitative Care Training

As we’ve already talked about, not enough bystanders have training in life-saving techniques such as CPR.

 

But what about U.S. medical students — do they need more training when it comes to basic, advanced and pediatric life support training? This kind of training is reserved for residents, typically. However, should it be introduced as part of medical students’ studies? Would it enhance retention of the life saving techniques?

 

A study released last year looked at the needs and perceptions of graduating med students with regard to emergency resuscitative care like Basic Life Support (BLS), Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) and Pediatric Advanced Life Support (PALS).

 

Of the 152 students selected, only 109 completed the survey. The survey found that 48.6 percent of students entering medical school didn’t have resuscitative training; 47.7 percent began clinics without that training. With a range of zero to 20, students said they saw an average of 3.0 cardiac arrest incidents in the hospital while training. They said their preparedness for adult CPR was 2.0 (on a 1 to 5 Likert scale, with 1 representing unpreparedness. For pediatric resuscitation preparedness, they said they were a 1.7.

 

A large percentage of students — 36.8 percent — said they avoided resuscitations because they lacked the training. Yet, a majority of students thought that should have the training. Specifically, 91.7 percent of students want ACLS. PALS should be included, according to 64.2 percent of students.

 

Students seem to express the desire for more resuscitation training via the study. Being unprepared for cardiac arrest situations makes students less inclined to participate in resuscitations.

 

Lifesaver Education teaches this CPR method and provides certification classes in CPR, BLS, ACLS, NRP, ECG, PALS, ventilator training, CPR and First Aid. To learn more, visit the website or call (626) 441-3406.

Yoga has Proven Heart Health Benefits

Yoga: Should you finally try it? With the New Year, the question may have been on your mind. Those cute yoga outfits, and it looks easy enough; however, is there any real benefit besides improving your flexibility? Is it just a persisting exercise fad?

 

Well according to a review of recent studies that looked at the heart health benefits of yoga, it is definitely worth it. In fact, the benefits are quite significant. Yoga is an ancient Eastern practice that positively impacts cardiovascular risk factors. These factors include LDL cholesterol (your “bad” cholesterol that contributes to plaque in your arteries, leading to possible heart attack or stroke) and systolic blood pressure.

 

Asana-based yoga practitioners displayed significant health improvements compared to those who did not participate in any physical activity. The yogis reduced their bad cholesterol levels by 12.1 mg/dL. Systolic blood pressure was lowered by 5.2 mm Hg. HDL cholesterol levels (your “good” cholesterol) were increased by 3.2 mg/dL.

 

Additionally, the yogis received the bonus benefits of significantly reduced body-mass index, triglycerides (a type of fat), heart rate and diastolic blood pressure.

 

In this way, yoga is similar to physical activities like brisk walking or cycling when talking about cardiovascular improvements. What this means is that individuals who cannot perform or don’t enjoy aerobic activity can still reap their cardiovascular disease-minimizing benefits through yoga.

 

The studies varied from three to 52 weeks.  Around a third of the studies were compared to no intervention. Twenty-one percent were compared to aerobic exercise. To learn more about the review that was originally released in mid-December in the “European Journal of Preventative Cardiology,” click here.

 

Lifesaver Education provides the highest-quality certification classes in BLS, ACLS, PALS, NRP, ECG, CPR and First Aid. To learn more, visit our website or call us today at (626) 441-3406. Email us at lifesaver@lifesavered.com.

Former VP Dick Cheney: How He Fought Coronary Heart Disease

Former Vice President Dick Cheney’s longtime fight against coronary heart disease is especially unique, according to a new Medscape article. Some things he has done over the course of several decades separate his experience from the average cardiac patient in the U.S., according to the article’s writer. The ultimate reason doesn’t come down to his access to top-notch quality care.

 

Cheney’s survival instincts and willingness to try whatever suggestion his physician had for his care —CABG, stents, LVAD and a heart transplant — helped his fight. With courage and strength, Cheney’s successful fight included the following:

 

According to Cheney’s physician, the former vice president was always extremely patient and compliant. After finding the right physician, he trusted the physician’s advice and always put his health first. He never said “no” to any treatment suggestion.

 

As mentioned, Cheney researched doctors to find the most innovative and competent.

 

Despite the fact that he had his first heart attack at age 37, Cheney continued his career path in the high-stress world of politics. His doctor said that despite the risk that stress may have on his heart, it’s important to do what you love. Cheney said not being involved in politics would have been more stressful.

 

After his first heart attack, Cheney made a point to quit smoking immediately and stuck to it.

 

His physician never let Cheney’s public figure status influence his care. Care was always dictated by his circumstances.

 

Cheney said that if you have doubts about your heart’s condition, get it checked out.

 

Lifesaver Education provides EKG certification classes in Los Angeles. To learn more, visit their website or call (626) 441-3406.

How Many Are Certified in CPR? The Answer May Surprise You

 How confident are you that if you suffer a sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) moment that someone around you will be able to help?

 

 

If you’re concerned, you have reason to be according to statistics. Only 3.5 percent of people are trained in CPR (cardio pulmonary resuscitation) annually. That percentage is even worse in rural areas.

 

CPR aids those who are not breathing, lack a pulse and are unconscious. Hands-only CPR — approximately 100 2-inch compressions per minute — is an effective method to keep blood circulating until professionals arrive. It also allows strangers to feel more comfortable performing CPR on strangers; many are worried about the mouth-to-mouth resuscitation technique.

 

It’s important to remember that each minute a person remains collapsed, survival rates decrease by 10 percent. In other words, CPR is extremely important the second a person suffers a SCA incident.

 

A study completed by Duke researchers found that the rate of bystander CPR knowledge has improved in the last four years (40 to 50 percent). However, the rates are still too low. U.S. residents who don’t have any physical impairment should learn how to perform hands-only CPR in case of any SCA incident that occurs near you. Oftentimes, a loved one may be the person who needs your knowledge when you least expect it.

 

Tips for performing hands-only CPR:

 

·         Call 9-1-1 immediately when you notice someone has suffered SCA.

·         Place your hands on the lower part of the breast bone.

·         Compress the chest approximately 2 inches.

·         Perform 100 to 120 compressions every minute.

·         Keep compressions going until professionals arrive to aid the individual.

 

Hands-only CPR is an effective CPR method due to the fact that there is already enough oxygen in the blood to last until emergency personnel arrive on scene. It should be noted that it is more effective with adults than children.

 

Learn more about Lifesaver Education’s CPR offerings in Los Angeles and around Southern California by visiting us online or by calling (626) 441-3406.

Free mobile app connects CPR-trained bystanders with nearby emergencies

It’s disappointing when 57 percent of adults in the U.S. say they are trained in CPR and would help a stranger if needed, but only 11 percent report that they’ve ever been in that situation. PulsePoint Respond and PulsePoint AED are free mobile apps looking to connect good Samaritans already trained in CRP to sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) situations requiring their help.  (PulsePoint can be downloaded here for either iOS or Android.)

 

It’s important to remember that a SCA patient’s chance for survival will decrease by 10 percent with every minute that CPR isn’t administered. CPR — especially even hands-only CPR — saves lives, and this new app hopes to help a victim’s chances in case they experience SCA in a public place. Currently, the app is being used in more than 900 cities and 22 U.S. states. The PulsePoint Foundation, a 501(c)3 nonprofit, is working with other countries to utilize the app.

 

The app has multiple uses: connecting CPR-trained citizens with SCA events, providing maps with the exact location of the nearest publicly accessible Automated External Defibrillators (AED), and allowing people to listen in on live emergency radio traffic and be notified of incidents by type.

 

How it works:

 

·         The app is activated for CPR-trained bystanders when someone calls 9-1-1 and local EMS are dispatched.

·         These bystanders, who have downloaded the app, are alerted if they are a quarter of a mile near the SCA victim.

·         The bystanders arrive on scene to administer CPR until EMTs arrive.

·         Bystanders can locate Automated External Defibrillators if needed.

 

The app hopes to decrease the amount of time between a collapse and a defibrillator or a collapse and CPR, improving SCA survival rates ultimately. The app is only available in communities that have implemented its use by local fire and EMS providers. The app was originally released in April 2010 on iOS. 

Sudden Cardiac Death: Risk Increases for Women Living Near Major Roads

 Living in a major metropolitan area can be stressful at times. Morning commutes via bumper-to-bumper highways can take their toll for even the most patient and controlled among us. However, it looks like major roadways can perhaps be more detrimental to our health than merely occasional stress, especially for women.

 

New research published in the American Heart Association (AHA) journal “Circulation” found that living in close proximity to a major roadway might increase a woman’s risk for sudden cardiac death. Researchers found that environmental factors like a busy highway are notable risk factors just like obesity and smoking.

 

This idea that coronary heart disease risk could be linked to major roads has been previously studied. However, this new research explores proximity to roadways and sudden cardiac death in more depth.

 

The study:

 

·         Focused on more than 107,000 women who were mostly white and around the average age of 60

·         Found that living within 164 feet of a major roadway elevated sudden cardiac death risk by 38 percent in 523 cases of sudden cardiac death

·         Every 328 feet closer to roadways equate to a 6 percent increased risk for sudden cardiac death

·         Risk for coronary heart disease increased 24 percent in 1,159 cases

 

Researchers felt they could adequately link an individual’s living distance from major roadways to sudden cardiac death risk. They noted that additional studies need to be conducted on how this correlation works with various ages, races and income levels.

 

In 2009, 35 million people in the U.S. lived within 984 feet of a major road.

 

The study noted that measures can be taken to promote heart healthiness even if you live within a certain distance of a busy highway. Individuals can be mindful of their weight, exercise regularly, eat nutritious meals, quit smoking and manage their stress better to decrease blood vessel and heart disease risk.

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