Health & Fitness

Artificial Respiration

Artificial respiration, breathing induced by some manipulative technique when natural respiration has ceased or is faltering. Such techniques, if applied quickly and properly, can prevent some deaths from drowning, choking, strangulation, suffocation, carbon monoxide poisoning, and electric shock.

Resuscitation by inducing artificial respiration consists chiefly of two actions:- (1) establishing and maintaining an open-air passage from the upper respiratory tract (mouth, throat, and pharynx) to the lungs and (2) exchanging air and carbon dioxide in the terminal air sacs of the lungs while the heart is still functioning. To be successful such efforts must be started as soon as possible and continued until the victim is again breathing. Various methods of artificial respiration, most based on the application of external force to the lungs, were once used. Methods that were popular particularly in the early 20th century but were later supplanted by more effective techniques included the modified Silvester chest-pressure–arm-lift method, the Schafer method (or prone-pressure method, developed by English physiologist Sir Edward Albert Sharpey-Schafer), and the Holger-Nielsen method.

In the Silvester method, the victim was placed faceup, and the shoulders were elevated to allow the head to drop backward. The rescuer kneeled at the victim’s head, facing him, grasped the victim’s wrists, and crossed them over the victim’s lower chest. The rescuer rocked forward, pressing on the victim’s chest, then backward, stretching the victim’s arms outward and upward. The cycle was repeated about 12 times per minute.

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