Monday, March 25, 2013

A Matter of Life and Death

As I pointed out when I first proposed "hands only chest compressions" to the CPR instructor (Fire chief of Seattle back in 1990) -- eliminating the need for mouth-to-mouth contact during the era of AIDS, and other unknown causes of death -- chest compressions is also breathing, and therefore doesn't need to be taught as a separate component.

The varying of the chest volume causes air to move in and out of the chest cavity -- which is breathing, and particularly important, is expelling the air out of the chest cavity, rather than blowing air into the lungs when it is partially full because the constant atmospheric pressure (15 lbs. psi) will automatically fill the lungs when the residual air in the lungs is evacuated by compressing the chest.

On the release of that pressure, the atmospheric pressure will automatically fill the lungs, and once that state has been achieved, there is no advantage to blowing more air into the lungs -- because that is just moving air into the windpipe -- and not the lungs, and is the reason hands only can be more effective, in that it doesn't disrupt the chest compressions -- for doing something that doesn't need to be done -- wasting valuable time, effort, and is the great deterrent for innocent bystanders getting involved.

Always, the first thing one needs to do when there is no pulse or signs of breathing is to call 911, and then when waiting, since the person is already effectively dead, doing the chest compressions is the best thing one can do to pump blood to the brain.  Learning this, can all be done over the 911 call -- and once learned, is a basic understanding of respiration and circulation that one should not forget and need costly annual recertification to learn -- which is another racket entirely.

Obviously this can and should be taught in schools and every opportunity to do so -- and doesn't require advanced training in brain/heart surgery and all the gimmickry the industry that has grown around it would like people to think is required to do anything -- including and especially their money-making certificates.

It's just that the schools have never taught anything very well and clearly, and believes "education" should not include vital lessons in life and death, but reserved only for academic (useless) pursuits -- dividing the world into increasing specialties and knowledge -- having no relevance and relationship to any comprehensive understanding of life.


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