Hands-only CPR should not be used for infants or children, for adults whose cardiac arrest is from respiratory causes (like drug overdose or near-drowning) or for an unwitnessed cardiac arrest. In those cases, the individual would benefit most from both chest compressions and breaths in conventional CPR, which is still an important skill to learn.

Give a Hand to Save Others from Sudden Cardiac Arrest

** What is Hands-Only CPR? **

When an adult has a sudden cardiac arrest, his or her survival depends greatly on immediately getting CPR from someone nearby. Unfortunately, less than 1/3 of those people who experience a cardiac arrest at home, work or in a public location get that help. Most bystanders are worried that they might do something wrong or make things worse. Thatís why the American Heart Association has simplified things.

** Two Steps to Save a Life **

When an adult suddenly collapses, trained or untrained bystanders Ė that means a person near the victim Ė should immediately:
Step 1. Call 911
Step 2. Push hard and fast in the center of the chest.

Studies of real emergencies that have occurred in homes, at work or in public locations, show that these two steps, called Hands-Only CPR, can be as effective as conventional CPR. Providing Hands-Only CPR to an adult who has collapsed from a sudden cardiac arrest can more than double that personís chance of survival.

** Hands-Only CPR Facts **

Sudden cardiac arrest claims hundreds of thousands of lives each year. One of the main reasons is because no one at the scene does anything to help. In fact, less than one-third of sudden cardiac arrest victims receive bystander cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). Getting help right away ó within a few minutes ó is the key to survival. People who have a sudden cardiac arrest and donít get help right away will probably die.

Fortunately, the American Heart Association has a new way for anyone to step in and help adults who suddenly collapse ó Hands-Only CPR.

Hands-Only CPR is CPR without mouth-to-mouth breaths. It involves two easy steps: Call 911 and push hard and fast on the center of the chest. Donít stop until help arrives.

Anyone can perform Hands-Only CPR and everyone should perform it if they arenít confident in their CPR skills or havenít learned conventional CPR.

Hands-Only CPR is easy to remember and results in delivery of more, uninterrupted chest compressions until more advanced care arrives on the scene.

Bystanders must take action when they see someone suddenly collapse and stop breathing normally. When effective bystander CPR is given immediately after sudden cardiac arrest, it can double or triple a victimís chance of survival. Hands-Only CPR can help save lives.

Do not give Hands-Only CPR to infants and children ó all infants and children who have a sudden cardiac arrest need conventional CPR.

Adults who nearly-drown or have cardiac arrest due to a respiratory cause need conventional CPR.