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“Stayin’ Alive” can save lives

The problem:

CPR is a lifesaving technique involving chest compressions alone or with mouth-to-mouth rescue breathing. It is used in emergencies such as cardiac arrest in which a person’s breathing or heartbeat has stopped.

CPR can triple survival rates, but some people are reluctant to do it in part because they are unsure about the proper rhythm for chest compressions. But research has shown many people do chest compressions too slowly during CPR.

The solution? What else – the Brothers Gibb!!

U.S. doctors have found the Bee Gees 1977 disco anthem “Stayin’ Alive” provides an ideal beat to follow while performing chest compressions as part of CPR on a heart attack victim.

The American Heart Association calls for chest compressions to be given at a rate of 100 per minute in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). “Stayin’ Alive” almost perfectly matches that, with 103 beats per minute.

[…]

In a small study headed by Dr. David Matlock of the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Peoria, listening to “Stayin’ Alive” helped 15 doctors and medical students to perform chest compressions on dummies at the proper speed.

Five weeks after practicing with the music playing, they were asked to perform CPR again on dummies by keeping the song in their minds, and again they kept up a good pace.

“The theme ‘Stayin’ Alive’ is very appropriate for the situation,” Matlock said in a telephone interview on Thursday. “Everybody’s heard it at some point in their life. People know the song and can keep it in their head.”

The findings will be presented this month at a meeting of the American College of Emergency Physicians in Chicago.

This reminds us of the time when Homer Simpson had a heart attack in Mr. Burns’ office, but was returned to the world of the living when Smithers mentioned ham…if only Disco Stu had been on hand with the proven Bee Gees CPR technique, the ham-resuscitation could have been avoided entirely…

Hibbert: Homer, I’m afraid you’ll have to undergo a coronary bypass operation.
Homer: Say it in English, Doc.
Hibbert: You’re going to need open heart surgery.
Homer: Spare me your medical mumbo-jumbo.
Hibbert: We’re going to cut you open and tinker with your ticker.
Homer: Could you dumb it down a shade?

Inspired by Wired News, we took a look at the BPM4DJS website to find other 100-bpm classics to inspire your lifesaving efforts. If you’re some kind of Gibb-hating asshole, you could also apply chest compressions to the unforgettable beats of “Ain’t No Fun” by Snoop Dogg, “The Choice is Yours” by Black Sheep, “Do You Really Want To Hurt Me?” by Culture Club, or “Tennessee” by Arrested Development, among many others…

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About Alpine McGregor
Just like you, man. I got the shotgun, you got the briefcase. All in the game, though, right?

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