New CPR Rules Will Save More Lives
The most common reason people die from cardiac arrest: no one nearby
knew CPR, or if they did know it, they didn't do it. In sudden cardiac
arrest, the heart has stopped beating.
New guidelines by the American Heart Association for cardio-pulmonary
resuscitation (CPR) are simpler and less intimidating to a bystander
thrust into the role of rescuer.
Now it's simple: Call for help, push the chest, and don't stop.
Two rescue breaths can be given before pushing on the chest and after
every 30 compressions, but mouth-to-mouth is optional. Until emergency
medical responders arrive, chest compressions alone can often be just as
effective in saving a life.
Authors of the new guidelines say the more times a person pushes on the
chest, the better off the patient is. Compressions cause blood flow to
the brain and other vital organs.
When someone collapses, doesn't respond to shaking, and isn't breathing,
CPR can save his life.
Revised guidelines call for 30 compressions between breaths instead of
•Position the person flat on his back, tilt the head back, and lift the
chin until teeth nearly touch.
• (Optional) Pinch the nose and give two full breaths that are two
seconds long and produce a visible chest rise.
• Place your hands in the center of the chest between the nipples, one
hand on the other. With elbows locked, press the heel of your hand into
the chest. Give 30 compressions for every two full breaths. Repeat until
medical help arrives.
About 250,000 people die of cardiac arrest in the U.S. each year.
Folate and Hemorrhagic Stroke
Hemorrhagic stroke is more deadly than its better-known counterpart,
ischemic stroke. A hemorrhagic stroke is also called a cerebral
hemorrhage or bleeding in the brain.
Like ischemic stroke, risk factors for hemorrhagic stroke include
inflammation in the arteries and heart, high blood pressure, and
hardening of the arteries caused by plaque. But much of the advice given
on strokes is primarily for prevention of ischemic strokes.
New studies now suggest a prevention strategy targeted for hemorrhagic
strokes exclusively. They show that folate, a B vitamin found in green
leafy vegetables, dried beans and some other vegetables and fruits,
helps to protect against hemorrhagic stroke AND Alzheimer's disease.
The Swedish study reported in the American Heart Association journal
Stroke shows that subjects with the highest levels of folate had only
one-fifth the risk of hemorrhagic stroke than those with the lowest
There was no such correlation for ischemic stroke risk.
Steroid Injections for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Carpal tunnel syndrome is one of the most reported occupational
maladies. Though it is often associated with heavy computer use, people
in many other jobs report carpal tunnel problems, as do golfers and
If patients don't respond to corticosteroids, splinting, and
anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen, doctors may recommend surgery.
Soon, treatment with steroid injections may eliminate the need for
surgery. A study reported in Arthritis & Rheumatism, shows that in
patients treated with local steroid injections, 94 percent reported
significant improvement at the 3-month mark. In patients who had the
surgery, 75 percent had significant improvement. At the end of one year,
however, improvement was the same for those taking injections and those
Patients receiving the local steroid injections received one shot to
start the treatment and one shot 14 days later.