From bench to trench – let’s speed it up!

“From bench to trench” refers to the process of transfering knowledged derived from the scientific bench where research takes place, to the trenches in clinics and hospitals where doctors are striving to save lives by applying that scientifically derived knowledge. The shocking truth of the matter is that what we learn in scientific research is not readily accepted by the experts (market leaders) in practice who represent and have career vested interests in the current protocols. Lives are lost year in and year out while the old guard guards their habitual protocols despite the new knowledge and sadly new scientifically proved protocols are usually only accepted after the old guard dies off.   Max Plank, the great physicist wrote “Science advances one funeral at a time.”  and what was true in his day is still maddeningly true today.

So now we know that CPR is more efficient with compression only but the Ameican Heart Association has delayed at least 4 years getting the word out. Who is counting those who have died needlessly?

Time to change CPR guidelines, cardiologist says

Although compressions-only cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) was unveiled in 2003, after a decade of research, the American Heart Association still stops short of recommending it.

Two new studies, of 10,000 Swedish and 5,000 Japanese patients, who suffered a witnessed, out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, show comparable rates of survival after compressions-only or compressions with mouth-to-mouth breathing.

Previous studies have shown better survival rates with compressions only. Additionally, cardiac researcher Gordon Ewy, M.D., notes that mouth-to-mouth breathing interrupts blood flow to the brain. Thus, compressions-only CPR minimizes brain damage.

“Millions of dollars and millions of hours” have been spent to teach traditional CPR worldwide, Ewy points out, although it works no better than chest compression only, at this point rarely taught and usually done by people with no training (Carla McClain, Ariz Daily Star 12/21/07).

“It is now time to change the guidelines,” he said (Circulation 2007;116:2894-2856).

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