Staying Alive

I love Radio Lab. Did you know that I love Radio Lab? Well I do, I bloody love it. Radio Lab, that is.

If you are so incurious that you still don’t know what Radio Lab is, then go back and click something. I’ll wait for you, honest.

So then, I listened to one of the Radio Lab “shorts” last night and heard a great story. The story discussed a common problem in CPR classes, which is namely teaching the students the correct speed at which to apply pressure to the heart.

The ideal speed is around 100 beats per minute; anything faster means that the heart will not have time to fill properly with blood, anything slower means that the blood will not move around the body fast enough to do any good.

So some smart person came up with the idea of finding a song with the correct tempo and teaching the students the trick of thinking of the song while performing the procedure.

And the song? Well it’s this one right here. Isn’t that just marvellous?

There’s also another song that has precisely the correct speed, and is also very easy to recall. And it’s this one. Slightly less appropriate, it must be admitted, but still funny, if you’re sick and twisted like me.

And if you’re not, then please leave now.

/ paddy

17 thoughts on “Staying Alive

  1. Well the first one was “This video is not available in your country due to copyright restrictions.”, but I can guess it from the title of this post ;-). The second one did raise a titter, so I guess I must be just as sick and twisted as you!

  2. I am vaugely aware of someone getting a formal complaint because they actually tried to do CPR whilst singing it out loud. Getting the speed right is actually quite difficult, but fortunately if your patient is attached to the defiib you can see the speed on the defib.. but signing in your head works really well until you have got them attached to the monitor.

  3. There was a randomised control trial of Nellie The Elephant and other songs during CPR training for lay people.

    The songs increased the rate but decreased the depth of compressions. Though I would add that if you are concentrating on doing good chest compressions you tend to either concentrate on rate or depth, not both. It takes quite a bit of a practice to be able to do both as second nature.

    Here’s a link to the abstract – along with some other song suggestions and an online poll.

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