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Pediatrics. 2013 Mar;131(3):e797-804. doi: 10.1542/peds.2012-1892. Epub 2013 Feb 25.

Chest compression quality over time in pediatric resuscitations.

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Emergency Medicine and Trauma Center, Children's National Medical Center, Washington, DC 20010, USA.



Chest compression (CC) quality deteriorates with time in adults, possibly because of rescuer fatigue. Little data exist on compression quality in children or on work done to perform compressions in general. We hypothesized that compression quality, work, and rescuer fatigue would differ in child versus adult manikin models.


This was a prospective randomized crossover study of 45 in-hospital rescuers performing 10 minutes of single-rescuer continuous compressions on each manikin. An accelerometer recorded compression quality measures over 30-second epochs. Work and power were calculated from recorded force data. A modified visual analogue scale measured fatigue. Data were analyzed by using linear mixed-effects models and Cox regression analysis.


A total of 88 484 compression cycles were analyzed. Percent adequate CCs/epoch (rate ≥ 100/minute, depth ≥ 38 mm) fell over 10 minutes (child: from 85.1% to 24.6%, adult: from 86.3% to 35.3%; P = .15) and were <70% in both by 2 minutes. Peak work per compression cycle was 13.1 J in the child and 14.3 J in the adult (P = .06; difference, 1.2 J; 95% confidence interval, -0.05 to 2.5). Peak power output was 144.1 W in the child and 166.5 W in the adult (P < .001; difference, 22.4 W, 95% confidence interval, 9.8-35.0).


CC quality deteriorates similarly in child and adult manikin models. Peak work per compression cycle is comparable in both. Peak power output is analogous to that generated during intense exercise such as running. CC providers should switch every 2 minutes as recommended by current guidelines.


[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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