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Blacks Less Likely to Get Help on Scene After Cardiac Arrest: Study
Date:5/11/2012

ur findings show troubling racial disparities in the use of these lifesaving measures, and they point to the need to do more to ensure that every patient has the best chance of surviving," he added.

In another study using the same data source, Band and his colleagues found that people who suffered cardiac arrest at night were less likely to have regained their heartbeat by the time they arrived at a hospital than those who suffered cardiac arrest during the day -- 14.1 percent vs. 16.5 percent.

People who suffered cardiac arrest between 8 p.m. and 8 a.m. also were much less likely to receive bystander CPR and took longer to be transported to a hospital than those who had cardiac arrest during the day.

That cardiac arrests at night are more likely to occur in the home rather than in public places may partly explain these differences, Band said.

The studies -- to be presented Friday at the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine annual meeting in Chicago -- highlight the need to increase public awareness of the importance of CPR and AED use, Band said.

"It is imperative for the public to know that these two interventions have the greatest impact on survival, and they can be performed by anyone. If CPR and AEDs were employed for every cardiac arrest, hundreds of thousands of lives would be saved annually in the United States alone," he said. "Our studies reiterate the fact that use of these basic lifesaving tools is far too low across all patient populations, and even small increases in their use would translate into very significant increases in survival."

More information

The American Heart Association has more about cardiac arrest.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCE: University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, news r
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