American Heart Association's guidelines dictate that Adult CPR is performed on any person over the age of 8. The procedure outlined in the following lessons is similar to Children CPR and Infant CPR, although some critical differences apply.
Before you start any rescue efforts, you must remember to check the victim for responsiveness.
Assessing the situation
If you suspect that the victim has sustained spinal or neck injury, do not move or shake him. Otherwise, shake the victim gently and shout "Are you okay?" to see if there is any response. If the victim is someone you know, call out his name as you shake him.
If there is no response, immediately dial 9-1-1 and check the airway.
A-B-C of CPR
"A" is for AIRWAY. If the victim is unconscious and is unresponsive, you need to make sure that his airway is clear
of any obstructions. The breaths may be faint and shallow - look, listen and feel for any signs of breathing
If you determine that the victim is not breathing, then something may be blocking his air passage. The tongue is the most common
airway obstruction in an unconscious person and it may be necessary to perform a finger sweep in order to move the tongue or
any other foreign object away from the air passage. With the victim lying flat on his back, firmly hold his chin with one
hand while using the finger of your other hand in a sweeping motion
Once the airway is unblocked, place your hand on victim's forehead and your other hand under the tip of the chin and gently tilt his head
backward [show me].
In this position the weight of the tongue will force it to shift away from the back of the throat, opening the airway.
If the person is still not breathing on his own after the airway has been cleared, you will have to assist him breathing.
"B" is for BREATHING. With the victim's airway clear of any obstructions, gently support his chin so as to keep it
lifted up and the head tilted back. Pinch his nose to prevent air from escaping once you begin to ventilate [show me].
Take a full breath, place your mouth tightly over the victim's (use a shield barrier if one is available) and blow [show me]
until the victim's chest rises. Maintain a tight seal around his mouth and be careful not to over-inflate his lungs as this may force air into the stomach, causing him to vomit. If this happens, turn the victim's head to the side and sweep any obstructions out of the mouth before proceeding.
Between each breath allow the victim's lungs to relax - place your ear near his mouth and listen for air to escape and watch the chest fall as he exhales [show me].
If the victim remains unresponsive (no breathing, coughing or moving), check his circulation.
"C" is for CIRCULATION. In order to determine if the victim's heart is beating, place two fingertips on his
carotid artery, located in the depression between the windpipe and the neck muscles, and apply slight pressure for several seconds.
If there is no pulse then the victim's heart is not beating, and you will have to perform chest compressions.
When performing chest compressions, proper hand placement is very important. Place two fingers on the victim's sternum
and then put the heel of your other hand next to your fingers
Now you need to place your hand on top of that hand [show me] and interlace the fingers [show me].
Lock your elbows and using your body's weight, compress the victim’s chest. The depth of compressions should be approximately 1˝ to 2 inches - remember: 2 hands, 2 inches [show me]. If you feel or hear slight cracking sound, you may be pressing too hard. Do not become alarmed and do not stop your rescue efforts! Damaged cartilage or cracked ribs are far less serious then a lost life. Simply apply less pressure as you continue compressions.
Count aloud as you compress 15 times at the rate of about 3 compressions for every 2 seconds. Finish the cycle by giving the victim 2 breaths. This process should be performed four times - 15 compressions and 2 breaths - after which remember to check the victim's carotid artery for pulse and any signs of consciousness.
What to do next
If there is no pulse, continue performing 15 compressions/2 breaths, checking for pulse after every 4 cycles until help arrives.
If you feel a pulse (i.e. the victim's heart is beating) but the victim is still not breathing, rescue breaths should be administered, one rescue breath every five seconds (remember to pinch the nose to prevent air from escaping). After the first rescue breath, count five seconds and if the victim does not take a breath on his own, give another rescue breath.