People overestimate success of CPR

Lifestyle

Individuals overestimate the success rate of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), according to a study published online July 13 in the Emergency Medicine Journal.

Norkamari Shakira Bandolin, M.D., from University of California Davis in Sacramento, and colleagues surveyed 500 adult emergency department patients and their companions to assess their expectations about CPR.

The researchers found that 53 percent of respondents had performed or witnessed CPR. Nearly two-thirds (64 percent) had participated in a CPR course. For the vast majority of respondents (>95 percent), television was the main source of information about CPR. More than half of respondents estimated the success rate of CPR to be >75 percent in all situations. Age, sex, race, spiritual beliefs, and personal health care experience were unrelated to estimated CPR success rates. While >90 percent of respondents want to receive CPR, if needed, fewer than one-third had discussed CPR with a medical provider.

“Consistent with prior studies, individuals overestimate the success rate of CPR. Health care experience does not appear to mitigate optimism about CPR, and individuals overwhelmingly want CPR for themselves,” the authors write. “Though few had talked about CPR with a medical provider, most wanted to have informed decision-making conversations. Such discussions could help patients obtain a more realistic view of CPR outcomes.”