CPR application could save lives

A well-known nursery rhyme and children’s song could potentially save lives this summer.

New research from UT Southwestern Medical Center, in conjunction with the Resuscitation Outcomes Consortium, shows that a person should perform between 100 and 120 chest compressions per minute during CPR for the best chance to restore a pulse. Compressions to the chest performed to the repeatable beat of “Row, Row, Row Your Boat” fall right in that crucial range.

“More or less compressions have a substantially lower chance of restoring a heartbeat,” says Dr. Ahamed Idris, emergency medicine expert at UT Southwestern who was involved in the investigation published in the journal Circulation.

As the swimming and boating season begins, so too does the risk of drowning incidents and cardiac arrests caused by overexertion.

If someone has suffered cardiac arrest, three steps can significantly improve the chance of saving their life.

  • Call 9-1-1;
  • Use both palms to press hard on the center of the victim’s chest, and repeatedly hum the tune while maintaining the compressions:

Row, row, row your boat,
Gently down the stream.
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily,
Life is but a dream.

  • Do not stop until first responders arrive.

Visit www.utsouthwestern.org/emergency to learn more about emergency medicine’s clinical services at UT Southwestern.

Media Contact: lisa.warshaw@utsouthwestern.edu