Saving Chicago CPR http://www.savingchicagocpr.com CPR Certification Chicago. Chicago ACLS Courses Mon, 16 Jul 2018 02:35:33 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.7 30627384 Which CPR Certification Do I Need? http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/which-cpr-certification-do-i-need/ Wed, 17 Jun 2015 16:03:38 +0000 http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/?p=3266 read more →]]> There are many reasons people take a CPR course. Work requirements, professional license requirements, new parents, and general knowledge are the most common. Depending on your why you’re taking a course, the type of course and organization you certify through (if you even need to be certified) can make a huge difference. Here is a short breakdown of the types of CPR certifications.

BLS For Healthcare Providers

BLS stands for Basic Life Support. BLS training includes CPR, AED usage, & Choking relief for adults, children, & infants. The course includes the use of a bag-mask to provide breathing for victims. An American Heart Association course is required to last at least 4 hours. At the end of the course, there is a 25 question exam. You must pass the test with an 84%. Once you pass the written test & the practical portion of the course, you will be certified for 2 years.

Things to note:

  • An American Heart Association certification is accepted in all 50 States
  • An online ONLY BLS course is a scam & will not result in a certification that most employers or States will accept.
  • There is an online BLS course for American Heart Association BLS training. The course REQUIRES an in-person skills session (the skills take about 30 minutes). This will result in the SAME certification as the full in-person BLS course. It is a GREAT time saver.
  • All American Heart Association courses REQUIRE students to have their own course manual. If an organization lets you borrow a manual or doesn’t require one, the course is not meeting the American Heart Association standards. This may make your certification invalid.
  • All American Heart Association courses REQUIRE students to have their own course manual. If an organization lets you borrow a manual or doesn’t requirement, the course is not meeting the American Heart Association standards. This may make your certification invalid.

BLS For Healthcare Providers is designed for, you guessed it, healthcare workers. However, this course can be taken by anyone. It is just specifically designed for healthcare workers. If you are or will be a healthcare worker of any kind, this is the course for you. If you’re ever not sure what type of CPR training you need, take this. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

CPR & AED

CPR & AED training is designed for non-healthcare workers who need to be CPR certified for work or who have a desire to learn & become CPR certified. There are several different names for this. Heartsaver is the brand name for the American Heart Association’s CPR training.

Basic CPR & AED training includes CPR, AED usage, & choking relief for adults, children, & infants. The course does include a certification. Depending on the State you are taking your course, there may or may not be a written exam. Illinois, for example, does NOT require the written exam for CPR certification.

Things to note:

  • An American Heart Association certification is accepted in all 50 States
  • An online ONLY CPR course is a scam & will not result in a certification that most employers or States will accept.
  • There is an online CPR course for American Heart Association CPR & AED training. The course REQUIRES an in-person skills session (the skills take about 30 minutes). This will result in the SAME certification as the full in-person CPR course. It is a GREAT time saver.
  • All American Heart Association courses REQUIRE students to have their own course manual. If an organization lets you borrow a manual or doesn’t require one, the course is not meeting the American Heart Association standards. This may make your certification invalid.

CPR & AED training is designed to train a non-healthcare worker and teach them the skills needed to act in an emergency until proper medical care arrives.

If you have any questions on which course is for you, feel free to contact us here.

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Amiodarone, What Can’t It Do? http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/amiodarone-cant/ Tue, 26 Aug 2014 18:35:50 +0000 http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/?p=2101 read more →]]> Amiodarone (Ami, Amio, Cordarone) is a drug commonly given during cardiac arrest.
Amio is to patients in V-fib or VF cardiac arrest. For the most part, Amio replaced Lidocaine in resuscitation. But what does it really do? Does Amiodarone stop the ventricles? Does Amio stop VF? Here’s your chance to find out!

Amiodarone

Trade names: Cordarone, Nexterone
Drug class: Class III Antiarrhythmic Agent
Pregnancy class: D (There are known human fetal risks, but the benefits to the mother out weigh the risks to the fetus)

Before we go into what Amiodarone does, there is one more side note to know. Amio comes in a few forms, Intravenous & oral. We will be talking about the IV form today. Amiodarone can be given in a bolus & drip. We’re going to be talking about both. This drug can be given via IV/IO but NEVER ETT. Oh, and everything we’re talking about (dosages and such) are all for an adult and based off the 2010 AHA Guidelines.

 Amiodarone A 10ML pre-filled Amiodarone syringe

Amiodarone Vial A 150ML/3ML Amiodarone vial

So now that we know what amio is, we can talk about what it does.

VF cardiac arrest: During a VF cardiac arrest, 300mg of Amio is given following the first dose or Epi/Vaso, via IV/IO, and 150mg after the 2nd dose of Epi/vaso. But why? Here’s what Amiodarone does:

  • Science Jargon: Amiodarone prolongs the 3rd phase of the cardiac action potential. It also has similar effects like antiarrhythmic class Ia, II & IV drugs.
  • Non-scientific words: Amiodarone acts like a beta blocker. It slows the actions of the SA & AV node.

Ventricular Tachycardia: When a patient has unstable V-tach, Amiodarone is NOT the first therapy that should be used. Patients should be cardioverted immediately. In stable patients with monomorphic VT, 300MG of amio should be used. Amio is CONTRAINDICATED in polymorphic VT.

This is only a brief look into Amiodarone. Amio is an extremely useful drug in emergency medicine. For more detailed information on Amiodarone, be sure to check out the National Library of Medicine.

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Push for CPR & AED’s in Illinois schools http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/push-cpr-aeds-illinois-schools/ Wed, 07 May 2014 14:00:33 +0000 http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/?p=1796 read more →]]> It may come as a shock to most people, but AED’s are NOT required in Illinois schools. CPR training isn’t required either! Seems ridiculous to us too.

Every year, Saving Chicago CPR provides CPR training to over 500 Chicago area high school students. This training is a vital life skill for everyone to learn. According to a recent CDC study, sudden cardiac arrest kills one student athlete every three minutes in the United States. Many of these deaths can be easily prevented with CPR and early access to an AED.

The current push to have AEDs & CPR training in Illinois schools comes from Harry Bell. Harry, 17, performed CPR on his father Eric & saved his life. He learned CPR as a freshman in high school. Read more about The Bell family push for CPR training in this Chicago Tribune Article.

If you’re interested in learning CPR, be sure to view our list of upcoming classes here.

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How To Perform CPR http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/perform-cpr/ Fri, 02 May 2014 14:00:30 +0000 http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/?p=1767 read more →]]> This is an essay written by one of our 2014 nursing scholarship winners, Janelle Oca.

Oxygen. A basic yet essential element that provides us with the capability to breathe and survive every day. Breathing is effortless but what happens when we stop taking in oxygen? Without it, brain damage and ultimately death are inescapable for anyone who falls victim to needing cardio pulmonary resuscitation. That’s why it is vital that everyone knows how to provide high quality CPR and takes any provided opportunities to learn and practice the correct and efficient techniques to save someone’s life. Taking a seven day course to learn CPR can add numerous days to a victim’s life.
To begin, if someone becomes unconscious and stops breathing, take charge. Do not expect someone else to provide CPR, be the first line of defense. Time is your worst enemy so acting swiftly will help prevent serious permanent brain damage. Delegating tasks to individuals such as calling 911, locating the AED, and finding a partner trained in CPR saves time. Calling 911 is the most important step because that is the first chain of survival. Most people underestimate how strenuous CPR is. Giving high quality CPR requires intense power and endurance. It can become daunting and exhausting for only one person. It is essential to have a partner to conserve energy to ensure high quality CPR.
Next, assess the scene for safety because it is a top priority to prevent endangering your life and others. Then tap and shout to see if the person is responsive, if not, proceed with CPR. The key to high quality compressions, which is the most important part of CPR, requires both hands to exert intense amount of pressure upon the chest which pumps blood to the heart. Remember you become the person’s heart that pumps blood, so push forcefully.
Most people’s concern is harming the person, but pushing too hard is better than not hard enough. Although it may cause an injury, you increased their chance of survival through pumping the heart forcefully due to the high quality compressions you gave. While performing adult CPR, push hard and fast at least two inches at a rate of at least 100 compressions. Giving compressions is exhausting for one person so switching at least every two minutes makes the CPR high quality. Keep the pauses between compressions as short as possible.
After compressions, provide oxygen by giving breathes. When holding, open the airway and pinch the nose closed and completely cover their mouth with your mouth so no air escapes, this ensures high quality breathing. Keep your eyes focused on their chest to see if it rises because then you know that the breaths you are providing are high quality. Reset the airway again by tilting the head and lifting the chin if the chest doesn’t rise. Give another breath and see if the chest rises and allow 10 seconds to give breathes.
As a result, providing mediocre CPR will not suffice, knowing how to give high quality CPR is extremely important because it can mean either life or death for the person. If you follow all of these tips to provide high quality CPR you will increase their chance of survival.

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CPR is Imperative http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/cpr-imperative/ Thu, 01 May 2014 14:00:31 +0000 http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/?p=1764 read more →]]> This essay is from one of the winners of our 2014 nursing scholarship, Theresa Grannan

One of the most imperative things to know is how to properly give CPR. CPR is something that can seem so simple but is yet more complex than you would think. CPR is not just complex because of the technique you may use but because of the fact that you are trying to save someone’s life in the process. As a society, out of the many things we value one sticks out to us the most and that is life. A person’s life is one of the most important things to our society. That is why it is important to know how to give high quality CPR during an attempt to save someone’s life. One of the many reasons it is important to know how to give high quality CPR is because you have someone’s life on the line and if done wrong you could also be responsible for what happens to them after or during CPR. CPR is not something anyone should mess around with. It is a way to save someone’s life, if done right you could be labeled a hero and if done wrong a monster; two completely different things that completely depend on if you did a valuable CPR job or not. Although it may not be as stressed as it should be CPR is more difficult than one would think when actually put in the situation. For example, your arms may get tired, your lower back may ache and you may become out of breathe or fatigued because of the constant work you are doing to save someone’s life. When you are put in a real life situation you have to realize you are not working with a mannequin anymore and there can be no mistakes made because someone’s life is on the line. This is another reason it is important to practice how to properly do CPR when you have the chance so when given a real life situation you know how to react and exactly what to do in that setting. Because CPR can potentially be life changing it is important to take it seriously like it was a real situation. Knowing that you can properly take care of someone in a situation where CPR is needed can be very rewarding because you know you can potentially save that person’s life. If you were given the opportunity to save someone’s life it is imperative to know how to give high quality CPR because you can be responsible for the outcome, good or bad, you may get fatigued and will have to know how to carry on and because you can potentially have the ability to save someone’s life. So why wouldn’t you learn how to properly give CPR if you knew the life you could possibly be saving is someone very dear and close to you! That is why it is important to give high quality CPR to anyone that needs it.

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Personal Nursing Philosphy http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/personal-nursing-philosphy/ Wed, 30 Apr 2014 17:34:58 +0000 http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/?p=1762 read more →]]> This is an essay by one of our 2014 Nursing Scholarship winners, Arnetta Thomas.

My philosophies on nursing are very simple ones, but are very important traits to the nurse I would like to become. In my opinion caring and compassion are two of the most important characteristics one must possess in the field of nursing. However, knowledge is equally as important, because you need this to carry out your daily tasks with confidence and assurance. These three things are how I plan to carry out my own career.

Caring and compassion goes hand and hand with being able to understand what the patient is going through. I want my patients to know I am there for them, and I am the nurse that they can have complete trust in with their care. I will go about my career taking the time to listen to the patient. I will do this without bias and complete focus on gaining the understanding their needs.

Although caring and compassion is a necessity it is all so very essential to have great knowledge and skills of your craft. We must know the needs of patients through assessing and have the knowledge to recognize signs and symptoms. If we don’t have this knowledge it could make our job virtually impossible. I would like to have a full understanding of my craft and what it is that may or may not be wrong with my patient

“A nurse is someone who cares for the sick and infirm. But a nurse is much more!” (Kathy Quan, 2006) A nurse is the one who the patient is in contact with the most, and I want to be more than just someone cares for the sick. I want to be a healer, a friend, and an educator. I will uphold my promises I have made to myself throughout my career and use my philosophies to be the best nurse I can be to every patient and non patient I encounter.

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V-Fib: What it is and how to battle it http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/v-fib-battle/ Thu, 10 Apr 2014 14:00:37 +0000 http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/?p=1540 read more →]]> V-fib, VF, Ventricle Fibrillation. All these terms mean the same thing. A lethal rhythm that, if left untreated, will result in death. With quick action and a prepared rescuer, we can try to prevent death and hopefully, save a life. First lets explain what Vfib is.

Ventricle Fibrillation

Medical: Cardiac muscle of the heart is contracting uncoordinatedly in the ventricles. This produces a quiver. It is identified as “irregularly irregular”, meaning there is no predicability in the heart rhythm on an ECG. During Ventricle Fibrillation, a pulse will not be able to be palpated and electrical intervention will be needed to correct the problem. If the rhythm in not defibrillated, it will degrade into asystole.

Non-medical: In V-Fib, the heart is basically having a seizure, producing no blood flow. This patient is dead. If the patient is talking to you or moving, they are not in VFib, check the monitor.

 Course VfibCourse V-Fib is easily identified

fine v-fibFine V-Fib is not as easy to identify

Identification

Medical: Ventricle Fibrillation can be identified by it’s disorganized, chaotic and turbulent activity on an ECG. The ECG deflections will constantly change direction and shape. Typically, VF occurs in unhealthy hearts with ischemic heart disease (note this is not the only cause though).

Non-medical: V-fib looks like static on an ECG. It is irregularly-irregular. The rhythm’s QRS complexes are wide and tall or wide and short. Wide is the key. In VF, the heart is basically having a seizure. Think of an ECG of a patient having a seizure or moving around would look like. Remember, in VF, THIS PERSON IS DEAD. If they are moving, talking or breathing, they are not in Ventrical Fibrillation.

V-Fib Treatment

The ACLS Algorithm per the 2010 AHA guidelines is:
ventricular fibrillation algorithm

This algorithm can overwhelm a lot of people. An easy way to remember all of this is:
1) CPR – If someone does not have a pulse, they need to have CPR started on them immediately
2) Shock, Shock, Drug, Shock, Drug, Shock, Drug, Shock….

That’s it. That’s the most simple breakdown of VF treatment. If you want to get complicated it would become:

Shock, Shock, Epi, Shock, Amiodarone, Shock, Epi, Shock, Amiodarone, Shock, Epi, Shock, Epi, Shock, Epi….

Now this treatment can get more tricky and starts to get some medicine involved when we look for the H’s and T’s (the underlying causes of the cardiac arrest). However, following the Shock, Drug treatment described as above, will allow you to go on autopilot until more experience providers can arrive.

Be sure to look at our video section for an example of V-fib.

To learn how to treat V-fib, sign up for an ACLS Course with us today!

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Epinephrine, how awesome is this drug?! http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/epinephrine-awesome-drug/ Thu, 20 Feb 2014 16:30:07 +0000 http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/?p=1499 read more →]]> Epinephrine (Epi, Adrenaline) is the most common drug in resuscitation. Epi is given to almost every patient in a cardiac arrest. There is no total dosage limit to Epi. It’s used by non-healthcare workers in Epi-Pens, used by John Travolta in Pulp Fiction and by almost every medical worker who has worked a cardiac arrest. But what does it really do? Does Epi give us a heart beat back? Does Epi decrease the defibrillation threshold? Is the word Adrenalin really a trademark?! Here’s your chance to find out!

Epinephrine

Trade names: EpiPen, Twinjet, Adrenalin (yes, it’s a trade name owned by Pfizer)
Drug class: Alpha-adrenergic agonist, Beta-adrenergic agonist (Makes everything speeds up)
Pregnancy class: C (There are risks to fetus shown in animals, but the benefits to the mother out weigh the risks to the fetus)

Before we go into what Epi does, there is one more side note to know. Epinephrine comes in two concentrations. 1:10,000 and 1:1,000. 1:10,000 means 1mg in 10 ML. 1:1,000 means 1mg in 1 ML. 1:10,000 goes via IV or IO and generally comes packaged in a preloaded syringe. 1:1,000 comes in a vial or ampule and goes via IM or ETT (endotracheal tube). Oh, and everything we’re talking about (dosages and such) are all for an adult and based off the 2010 AHA Guidelines.

 Epinephrine Prefill A 10ML pre-filled Epinephrine syringe

Epinephrine Ampule A 1ML Epinephrine ampule

So now that we know what Epi is, we can talk about what it does.

Cardiac arrest: During cardiac arrest, 1mg of is given every 3-5 minutes, preferably via IV/IO. But why? That’s the million dollar question. I was always told “because Epi get’s us a heart beat back”. I knew when I was told this, in paramedic school, that it wasn’t true. I’m sure you know it’s not true either. Here’s what Epi does:

  • Science Jargon: Epinephrine increases peripheral resistance from the α1receptor & increases cardiac output via the β1 receptor. The goal of this is to reduce all of the peripheral circulation and increase the cerebral and coronary perfusion pressures. This will then cause an increase of Oxygen exchange in the bodies cells.
  • Non-scientific words: Epinephrine will constrict all of the victims peripheral vasculature. This will allow more blood to go to the coronary arteries and to the brain during CPR, increasing the chances of a ROSC (return of spontaneous circulation).

Anaphylaxis: Anaphylaxis is a life threatening emergency in which inflammatory mediators are released from basephils and mast cells. This inflammatory response causes the release of histamine. Histamine causes the bronchial muscles to constrict, vasodilation and fluid leakage from the blood vessels.

  • Science Jargon: IV administration of epinephrine causes vasoconstriction via the αadrenoceptor. Due to the various effects α1 and β2 receptors, the blood pressure may be elevated or lowered.
  • Non-scientific words: Epi helps the body calm down. The victims blood vessels will constrict, dropping their blood pressure, causes the swelling to go down, and relaxes the airway, allowing the patient to breath.

This is only a brief look into Epinephrine. Epi is an extremely useful drug in emergency medicine. For more detailed information on Epinephrine, be sure to check out the National Library of Medicine.

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Heimlich Maneuver: Myths and Misconceptions http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/heimlich-maneuver-myths-misconceptions/ Mon, 17 Feb 2014 15:00:15 +0000 http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/?p=1453 read more →]]> Well, it happened, Clint Eastwood proved he’s the toughest 83 year old around. During a golf event, Eastwood performed the Heimlich maneuver on the Pebble Beach Pro-Am Golf Director. Steve John stated, “I can’t believe I’m 202 pounds and he threw me up in the air three times.” Eastwood knew how to properly perform the Heimlich and saved Mr. John’s life. However, more often then not, people perform the Heimlich maneuver improperly or perform it when the victim is not actually choking. This helpful video will help you learn how to perform the Heimlich on an adult. Note that this video is for entertainment only and not meant to be a substitute for an accredited CPR course, which covers the Heimlich maneuver.

First, you must assess if the victim is in fact choking. If the victim can make a sound, cough or speak, they are not choking. Encourage the victim to cough the item up. Keep them calm and call 911, if needed.

If the victim cannot make a sound and lets you know they want your help, you can perform the Heimlich maneuver. To do this, wrap your arms around the victim’s abdomen and place the thumb of one hand in the navel of the victim. Roll your thumb into a fist. Wrap your other hand around the victim and deliver quick, forceful blows to the abdomen. Stop if the object comes out or the victim becomes unresponsive.

If the victim becomes unresponsive, call 911 immediately, and begin CPR. In between compressions and breaths, look in the mouth for the object and remove the object if you see it.

To find a CPR course that covers the Heimlich maneuver for adults, children and infants, view our upcoming course schedule.

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Which CPR class is for me? http://www.savingchicagocpr.com/cpr-class/ Wed, 05 Feb 2014 14:30:11 +0000 http://savingchicagocpr.com/?p=1372 read more →]]> One of the common questions that we get asked is “Which CPR class should I take?”. This isn’t always a clear cut answer. Saving Chicago CPR offers five types of training. Here is an easy guide to help anyone who may be confused on what course they need.

For more information on what each course offers, be sure to click the links to the individual courses. A CPR class is not the end of emergency education. For non-healthcare workers, training can be extended into first aid. For healthcare workers, BLS is the foundation for all advanced courses, such as ACLS & PALS. For more information on CPR courses, visit the American Heart Association’s website at: heart.org

Which CPR Class

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