Basic Life Support (pre-covid 19)
Adult Basic Life Support (pre-covid 19)
(10 True/False questions with explanations).
Basic Life Support is the first part of the chain of survival.
FALSE: It is the second part of the vchain of survival. First, you must call 999 and request a defibrillator. If there are two helpers present, one can call 999 while the other starts Basic Life Support.
Basic Life Support will be more effective if the patient is on a firm surface.
TRUE: If you can, move the patient onto the floor.
Chest compressions need to be performed against the patient’s bare skin.
FALSE: Chest compressions will work through clothing and even Personal Protective Equipment.
‘Chest Compressions Only’ - Basic Life Support is valid in some circumstances.
TRUE: Especially where there is blood or vomit by the mouth. It is better to do Chest Compressions Only – Basic Life Support than nothing at all. In most cases the lungs, will still have some oxygen in them. A pocket mask or face-shield can be used to reduce the chances of cross-infection.
If you see the patient try to take an occasional breath, then don’t do Basic Life Support.
FALSE: Agonal breathing is ineffective breathing. It is slow and abnormal. When the heart stops beating, a distress signal goes from the brain to the lungs, telling them to do something. The result is slow gasp-like breaths. You MUST call 999, request a defibrillator and then start Basic Life Support.
Chest Compressions should be done at a rate of 100-120 compressions a minute, pushing down on the sternum 5-6cm each time.
TRUE: The correct placement is on the sternum, mid nipple-line. The hands, one on top of the other, fingers interlocked, must always stay in contact with the chest (no bouncing). Allow the chest to recoil all the way back up after each compression. Keep your arms straight.
The airway must be re-opened before each inflation.
TRUE. To do an inflation, pinch the soft part of the patient’s nose with your thumb and fore-finger. The outer edge of that hand, pushes down gently on the forehead. At the same time, lift the chin up using two fingers of your the hand under the chin. You should feel the chin bone, not the soft throat! Blow in for 1 second, just enough to see the chest rise. Let the chest fall, and then perform the second inflation.
The Ratio of compressions to breaths during Basic Life Support is 20:2.
FALSE: The ratio is 30 compressions to 2 breaths. This will be tiring. After two minutes (5 or 6 cycles) swap roles if there is another helper or the compressions will become less effective.
Being unable to inflate the chest is a valid reason to stop Basic Life Support.
FALSE: If the chest does not rise during a rescue breath, try tilting the head back a bit more, ensure a good seal on the nose, a good seal round the mouth. If the chest still does not rise, inspect inside the mouth in case there is a foreign object that you can see and hook out. Only stop Basic Life Support when told to be Health Care Professionals, you patient recovers or you become exhausted.
If the casualty is a child, wait for the ambulance, as you may cause an injury
FALSE: Always try to resuscitate a child. The adult sequence can be performed by the general public on a child. The child will stand a better chance of surviving if the adult sequence is used compared to doing nothing. You can use one hand instead of two for the chest compressions, and remember to blow just enough to see the chest rise (an adult’s lungs are bigger than a child’s – Do Not try to empty all the air in your lungs into the child!)
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