Skip Liplock, 'Go for the Heart' to Save a Life
Chest compressions key in heart attack CPR, says health group
By Zach Samalin,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 1, 2008 5:21 AM CDT
The American Heart Association recommended that untrained bystanders should attempt "hands-only" CPR if they see somebody suddenly collapse. Less than a third of heart attack victims receive any CPR.   (AP Photo)
camera-icon View 3 more images

(Newser) – Reluctant bystanders can skip mouth-to-mouth resuscitation if they witness someone collapse from a heart attack, but should attempt "hands-only" CPR to save a life, the American Heart Association has recommended.  With less than a third of cardiac arrest victims receiving any form of CPR before it's too late, anything remotely resembling a chest compression could help, reports Reuters.

In fact, "hands-only" CPR is just as good as the full deal, and that news may overcome inaction by bystanders reluctant to engage in mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. "The thing that's killing people is inaction," said an AHA spokesman. Even those who have "never been trained can help." Without quick action, brain death can occur in as little as four minutes. "You can't make them any worse," said the spokesman.