Marek Malysz1, Karol Bielski1, *Jacek Smereka1, 2, Klaudiusz Nadolny3, 4, Maciej Maslanka1, 5, Lukasz Szarpak1, 6
Which technique of chest compression should we use wearing full personal protective equipment: a pilot data
1Polish Society of Disaster Medicine, Warsaw, Poland
2Department of Emergency Medical Service, Wroclaw Medical University, Poland
3Department of Emergency Medical Service, Strategic Planning University of Dabrowa Gornicza, Poland
4Faculty of Medicine, Katowice School of Technology, Poland
5Maria Sklodowska-Curie Medical Academy in Warsaw, Poland
6Bialystok Oncology Center, Poland
To the Editor
Out-of-hospital cardiac arrest (OHCA) is a leading cause of global mortality and is a challenge for the Emergency Medical Services Team (EMS) personnel due to limited human resources. Overall prognosis and the neurological outcome are relatively poor following OHCA. Reported survival to discharge after the onset of OHCA varies from 0 to 21% (1). In the era of the COVID-19 pandemic, due to the risk of transmission of SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, the staff of the emergency exit teams should use enhanced personal protective equipment when performing medical rescue operations (including resuscitation) in a patient with suspected/confirmed COVID-19 (2). Full protective suits, masks with FFP2 or FFP3 filters as well as face shields or double gloves are most often recommended (3). The use of this type of protection may reduce the effectiveness of individual medical procedures (4-6) and thus reduce the effectiveness of resuscitation (7).
The aim of the study was to compare two different chest compression positions during suspected/confirmed COVID-19 adult cardiopulmonary resuscitation performed by paramedics wearing full PPE.
The study was designed as a prospective randomized crossover single-blinded trial and was conducted under medical simulation conditions. The trial was blinded at the statistical analysis stage. The trial involved 15 paramedics who had to perform 2-minute continuous chest compression using two techniques: taking the patient’s side position (Technique A) and taking over the patient’s head position (Technique B).
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