I'd like to correct a statement that elouns made to the effect that only defibrillation can restart the heart. In ventricular fibrillation, there is a lot of uncoordinated myocardial activity and if it is sustained, then it is fatal. The defibrillation current causes generalized depolarization, resulting in cessation of the useless contactions. It is spontaneous focal activity that restarts the heart. So, keep doing CPR in an arrest, even if there isn't a defibillator available. It serves to oxygenate the heart muscle and hopefully, promote spontaneous recovery. Of course, if
Vfib is the cause you probably won't be successful without a zapper, but there are other cases where the ECG shows a flat line rather than fibrillation where CPR can be effective. That having been said, advanced cardiac life support has a greater chance of success. With this, one uses IV lines and drugs, endotracheal tubes, defibrillators, pacemakers, etc. I've been involved in several cases, but the two most memorable involved cases where the arrest was discovered in surgery, so they represent ACLS
and both patients lived and got out of the hospital. Apparently, the best place to have an arrest is in Seattle, because a large portion of the population knows CPR.