Pediatric CPR: A Step-By-Step Guide

    Pediatric CPR: A Step-By-Step Guide

    Cardiopulmonary resuscitation, or CPR for short, is a common life-saving procedure that many people learn about as a first-aid during emergencies. It is a helpful technique done when a person encounters another drowning or having a heart attack, that causes the lungs and heart to stop breathing and beating, respectively. Kids may need pediatric CPR.

    Pediatric CPR is usually done through the combination of chest pumping (compressions) and rescue (mouth-to-mouth) breathing to help move blood from the heart to the body and oxygen to the lungs.

    Understanding How the Lungs and the Heart Work Together

    The lungs’ job is to take in (inhale) oxygen-rich air, which is essential for survival. Meanwhile, it is the heart’s responsibility to pump blood to the lungs and throughout the body.

    Indicators a Child Needs Pediatric CPR

    Pediatric CPR is closely similar to the CPR done in adults, except that this kind often involves children from 1 to 8 years old. The pediatric age also ranges from infancy to late adolescence (0 to 18 years old). So those who are in their teen years are also included in the same category.

    If the child shows any of the following signs and indicators, pediatric CPR should be performed:

    • Not breathing
    • No pulse rate
    • Unconsciousness

    The heartbeat and breathing of a child may stop due to a variety of reasons, which may include the following:

    How To Do Pediatric CPR

    An easy way to keep in mind what to do during an emergency is to remember and follow three easy steps with the acronym CAB:

    C – Do Chest Compresssions

    A – Check the Airway

    B – Do rescue Breathing

    Below is a detailed step-by-step procedure that a person must follow in executing pediatric CPR:

    1. Gently tap the child to check for alertness. Examine how the child is moving or making a noise. You may shout to ask if the child is alright.
    2. If the child does not respond, immediately call the hospital or any local emergency number that can bring an ambulance as soon as possible. You must not leave the child alone until you have executed the CPR procedure for two minutes straight.
    3. Place the child on their back with caution. If there is a possibility that the child has a spinal injury, the child should be moved by two persons to avoid twisting the head and neck in the wrong direction.
    4. After which, you may begin performing the chest compressions.

    Key Takeaways

    Pediatric CPR is a vital first aid technique everyone should know, especially those with kids.
    When dealing with an unconscious child who is not breathing, time is crucial. After only 4 minutes without oxygen, permanent brain injury can occur, and death can follow in as little as 4 to 6 minutes. Always call for emergency.

    Learn more about Child Health here.

    Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

    Medically reviewed by

    Michael Henry Wanat

    Respiratory Therapy


    Written by Fiel Tugade · Updated May 04, 2022

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