Bystander CPR helps cardiac arrest survivors

Credit: American Heart Association

DALLAS (WIAT) — Bystanders performing CPR contributed to more cardiac arrest survivors returning to work in a Danish study published by the American Heart Association journal Circulation.

Cardiac arrest is the abrupt loss of heart function in a person who may or may not have diagnosed heart disease. It occurs instantly, or shortly after symptoms appear. More than 326,200 cardiac arrests occurred over the last year in the United States.

This is the largest study to date. It examined how soon patients went into cardiac arrest went back to their jobs. It was found that more than 75 percent of survivors who had a cardiac arrest outside a hospital were capable of returning to work, but the chances of returning to work were about 40 percent higher for survivors who had received CPR from a bystander compared to those who didn’t.

“We already know CPR helps save lives, and now our finding suggest there is even more benefit in performing it,” said Kristian Kragholm, the study’s lead author. “When a bystander performs CPR quickly, it helps ensure enough oxygen is getting to the brain, which can help minimize brain damage and lead to that person being able to return to work.

The study also showed survivors that returned to work spent an average of three years back at work, and they also earned the same salary after their arrest as they did beforehand.

Copyright 2015 WIAT 42 News

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