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CPR Knowledge & Performance in the ED

CPR Knowledge & Performance in the ED

Despite advances in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), survival and recovery for patients receiving this care remain suboptimal, according to recent reports. Studies indicate that early and effective CPR can improve survival after cardiopulmonary arrest, but out-of-hospital and in-hospital providers often have difficulty performing high-quality CPR. Research has shown that providing poor-quality CPR has similar outcomes to not performing CPR at all. Recent recommendations have focused on chest compressions as an important focus to optimizing CPR, and some of the specific components of these compressions—including rate, depth, and recoil—have been found to affect outcome measures. “Chest compression technique in CPR is important,” says Thomas E. Terndrup, MD. “While ED personnel are trained in effective CPR techniques, they often struggle to perform chest compressions that adhere to American Heart Association (AHA) guidelines for CPR and emergency cardiovascular care.” Studies have also shown that knowledge of these guidelines and motor skills for CPR are not well retained, even within a year of training. However, other factors may improve performance, including having more CPR training and having more experience performing CPR. Analyzing Provider Performance Dr. Terndrup and colleagues had a study published in the Western Journal of Emergency Medicine that evaluated CPR knowledge and how well chest compressions were performed by a group of in-hospital providers with different levels of training and experience. “Most studies evaluating the performance of CPR have looked at personnel who provide care outside the hospital,” Dr. Terndrup says. “We wanted to see how well medical students and ED personnel with current CPR certification knew and understood CPR parameters and how this knowledge affected performance of chest compressions.” Dr. Terndrup...
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