RAPID CITY, S.D. — CPR is one of those life-saving skills that is better to have and not need, than to need and not have.
Over the weekend, fans watched in disbelief as Danish soccer player Christian Eriksen collapsed suddenly after suffering cardiac arrest during Denmark’s Euro 2020 opener.
He is currently recovering, and all because of the swift action of medical professionals in promptly performing CPR and applying a defibrillator.
“It was a very public example of what immediate CPR can do to someone. He went down and he had the best possible care in the world for being at a soccer game, but what was started and what was key in that was the basics of just doing CPR. And you saw that in the videos how quickly they started CPR on him,” said George Sazama, Nursing Director Adult Intensive Care Unit.
It is a reminder that CPR is one of the first lines of defense in case of heart failure or cardiac arrest.
With heart failure, it becomes more and more difficult for blood to reach the brain. And after an extended period of time, can be the difference between a full recovery and permanent neurological damage.
Fortunately, anyone can perform CPR.
“CPR…anybody can do it. I’ve taken care of a patient who had his 12-year-old son do it on him and he survived,” Sazama said.
For those living in rural areas, it is even more important to jump into action – as emergency services may not be readily available.
“The first step is dial 911; you want help coming as soon as possible so they can get the person to the hospital. And the second step is just find the center of their chest and press hard and fast until help arrives,” Sazama added.
What do the songs, “Stayin’ Alive,” “Crazy in Love,” and “Just Dance” have in common? Well, they’re part of the CPR playlist that ensures you have the correct rhythm when performing CPR.
The chest should be compressed at a rate of 100 beats per minute, and should continue until help arrives, or the individual is once again functioning.
Anyone interested in learning CPR can contact their local Red Cross for class opportunities – and look for demonstrations given at community events.