Biomedicine

CPR to Go

Cardiac arrest can strike without warning: That’s one reason why thousands of volunteers have learned cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). Although the chest-pumping technique moves air into the lungs and blood through the body, it is difficult to perform correctly; a few minutes of lifesaving exertion can exhaust even the burliest paramedic. Overall, only 15 percent of cardiac arrest victims survive.

Cardiologics Systems, a tiny research outfit in Baltimore, Md., is lab-testing a portable, inflatable vest that could provide a safer, easier way to do CPR. The nylon vest wraps around the victim like a big blood pressure cuff; a battery-powered pump drives 10 liters of air into the vest every second. Cardiologics faces competition in the portable-CPR niche from several other R&D outfits. Before the devices become a common sight at poolsides and in ambulances, however, developers must prove they outperform manual CPR in clinical tests.

Uh oh–you've read all five of your free articles for this month.

Insider Online Only

$19.95/yr US PRICE

Biomedicine

New technologies and biological insights are providing unprecedented ways of improving our health.

You've read of free articles this month.