Health Watch -- Affairs of the Heart: Learn CPR

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.


This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about ways to keep your heart healthy, but it isn’t just your own heart you need to be worried about. Doctors at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas say you can make a difference for other people’s hearts by learning CPR, or cardiopulmonary resuscitation.

Nearly half a million Americans have heart attacks away from the hospital every year, but less than a quarter of the population knows CPR. Permanent brain damage can occur within about four or five minutes of a heart attack, and it’s nearly impossible for medical personnel to respond that rapidly. That makes bystanders an important factor in heart attack survival.

Dr. Paul Pepe, chairman of emergency medicine at UT Southwestern, suggests organizing CPR classes for your neighborhood, office, church or school group so more people in your community will know what to do in an emergency.

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February 2006

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