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September 13, 1976

Cough-Induced Cardiac Compression: Self-administered Form of Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation

Author Affiliations

From the departments of medicine and radiology, Harbor General Hospital, and the UCLA School of Medicine (Drs Criley and Kissel), and the Cardiac Unit, Groote Schuur Hospital, Cape Town, South Africa (Dr Blaufuss).

JAMA. 1976;236(11):1246-1250. doi:10.1001/jama.1976.03270120022018

Eight patients undergoing coronary angiography were successfully resuscitated from ventricular fibrillation (VF), and three of these patients remained conscious and alert for 24 to 39 seconds after VF by coughing every one to three seconds. The mean aortic systolic pressure induced by cough was 139.7 mm Hg (±3.8) and only 60.7 mm Hg (±5.1) by external cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). Cough-CPR, accomplished by abrupt, forceful coughing maintains consciousness by rhythmic compression of the heart, has several advantages over external CPR in the catheterization laboratory, and may be applicable to other situations where serious rhythm disturbances are recognized before unconsciousness occurs.

(JAMA 236:1246-1250, 1976)

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