Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation for Children Age 1 to Early Teens
(Lay Rescuer CPR for Children Age 1 to Early Teens)
by Diana Kohnle
Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is a series of steps to help a person who is not responding and has stopped breathing. CPR helps deliver oxygen rich blood to the body tissue when the body is not able to do this on its own.
Reasons for Procedure
CPR is given to a child who is not breathing. Reasons for this may include:
The outcome will depend on the cause and how soon effective CPR was initiated. Many people are unable to regain a normal heartbeat after it has stopped.
Possible Complications TOP
It is possible that ribs will fracture or break during chest compressions. Other complications, like a puncture of a lung, are also possible.
People with weakened bones have a higher risk of fractures from CPR. However, there is greater risk of death if CPR is delayed or not done correctly.
What to Do TOP
Prior to Procedure
When you see a child suddenly collapse, or find a child unconscious on the ground, immediately check to see if he is responsive. Tap the child and ask: “Are you OK?” If the child is unresponsive, follow these steps:
How Long Will It Take?
The length of time for CPR depends on the underlying causes and response time of medical help.
Will It Hurt the Child?
The patient is unconscious when CPR is given. The procedure does not hurt. Some children may complain of soreness in the chest after regaining consciousness.
The emergency team will take over care when they arrive.
Children will need to be taken to the hospital for evaluation following CPR.
Call for Help TOP
If a child is unresponsive and someone is with you, have that person call for medical help right away. If you are alone, do CPR for about two minutes before calling for medical help.
Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada
American Heart Association guidelines. 2005 American Heart Association (AHA) guidelines for cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and emergency cardiovascular care (ECC) of pediatric and neonatal patients: pediatric basic life support. Pediatrics. 2006;117(5):e989-1004.
American Heart Association. 2010 American Heart Association Guidelines for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and Emergency Cardiovascular Care Science: Part 1 executive summary. American Heart Association website. Available at: http://circ.ahajournals.org/content/122/18_suppl_3/S640.full. Published October 2010. Accessed November 16, 2012.
American Heart Association. 2010 American Heart Association Guidelines for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and Emergency Cardiovascular Care Science: Part 13 pediatric basic life support. American Heart Association website. Available at: http://circ.ahajou.... Published October 2010. Accessed November 16, 2012.
American Heart Association. Heartsaver First Aid with CPR and AED. Dallas, TX: American Heart Association; 2006
Bush CM, Jones JS, et al. Pediatric injuries from cardiopulmonary resuscitation. Ann Emerg Med. 1996;28(1):40-44.
Bardy, G.H. A critic's assessment of our approach to cardiac arrest. New Engl J of Med. 2011;364(4):374-375.
Topjian AA, Berg RA, et al.Pediatric cardiopulmonary resuscitation: advances in science, techniques, and outcomes. Pediatrics. 2008 Nov;122(5):1086-98. Review.
Last reviewed March 2013 by Brian Randall, MD
Last Updated: 3/15/2013