1-20. MONITOR THE CASUALTY
a. To be sure the CPR effort is effective, the casualty's condition must be
monitored. The ventilator monitors the pulse and breathing to determine whether the
chest compressions are effective and whether the casualty's circulation and breathing
have begun gain.
b. The ventilator also checks the carotid pulse during chest compressions to
determine if the chest compressions are effective.
c. At the end of the first minute and every few minutes after that, stop chest
compressions for about 5 seconds to see if the casualty is breathing on his own and if
his circulation has improved.
d. Rescuers should change places when the compressor is tired.
CARDIOPULMONARY RESUSCITATION TERMINATION
External chest compression and rescue breathing must be performed properly in
order to support life. Sometimes even correctly performed CPR may cause
a. Neck and Spine Complications. If the head is not positioned properly, you
may not be able to get air into the casualty's lungs. You may, in fact, even cause neck
and spine complications if the head is not in the proper position.
b. Gastric Complications. Too much air pushed too fast into the casualty can
result in gastric distention (the air enters the casualty's stomach and pushes the
stomach out). Gastric distention can be caused by the rescuer delivering the breaths
with too much force, or the condition can be caused by an obstruction in the casualty's
airway which prevents his lungs from filling quickly. Gastric distention can cause
vomiting and may decrease the lung volume by pushing up on the diaphragm. The
treatment for gastric distention is to recheck and reposition the casualty's head to be
sure the airway is open. Ventilate and watch for the rise and fall of the casualty's chest.
If ventilations are still inadequate, roll the casualty onto one side, press into his
epigastrium (pit of the stomach), wipe out his mouth, and continue cardiopulmonary
Do not push on the casualty's abdomen.