How can someone who witnesses a cardiac arrest help?

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 10,172
    Dr. Robert O’Connor, professor & chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine at the University of Virginia Health System, discusses how a bystander can help a victim of cardiac arrest.

    Host: How can someone who witnesses a cardiac arrest help?

    Robert O'Connor: The first thing is they should just call for help, get a phone or ask someone to call 911 to get help on their way. The second step is if the person is unresponsive, they can't rise then, just begin chest compressions and if there is any doubt about how to do then stay on the phone with 911, most emergency dispatchers can instruct people on how to perform chest compressions. It's not so important to breathe for them. It's not so important to absolutely assess that they are in cardiac arrest. You don't have to determine that. With absolute certainty is best just to begin resuscitation, begin CPR because if you do that and promote some blood flow. Some blood flow occurs will helps on the way.

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