Part 1: Introduction
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This publication presents the 2005 American Heart Association (AHA) guidelines for cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and emergency cardiovascular care (ECC). The guidelines are based on the evidence evaluation from the 2005 International Consensus Conference on Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and Emergency Cardiovascular Care Science With Treatment Recommendations, hosted by the American Heart Association in Dallas, Texas, January 23–30, 2005.1 These guidelines supersede the Guidelines 2000 for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and Emergency Cardiovascular Care.2
As with all versions of the ECC guidelines published since 1974,2–6 the 2005 AHA Guidelines for CPR and ECC contain recommendations designed to improve survival from sudden cardiac arrest and acute life-threatening cardiopulmonary problems. These guidelines, however, differ from previous versions in several ways. First, they are based on the most extensive evidence review of CPR yet published.1 Second, these guidelines were developed under a new structured and transparent process for ongoing disclosure and management of potential conflicts of interest. Third, the guidelines have been streamlined to reduce the amount of information that rescuers need to learn and remember and to clarify the most important skills that rescuers need to perform.
Evidence Evaluation Process
The evidence evaluation process that was the basis for these guidelines was accomplished in collaboration with the International Liaison Committee on Resuscitation (ILCOR),1 an international consortium of representatives from many of the world’s resuscitation councils. ILCOR was formed to systematically review resuscitation science and develop an evidence-based consensus to guide resuscitation practice worldwide. The evidence evaluation process for these guidelines was built on the international efforts that produced the ECC Guidelines 2000.2
To begin the process, ILCOR representatives established 6 task forces: basic life support, advanced life support, acute coronary syndromes, pediatric life support, neonatal life support, and an interdisciplinary task force to address overlapping topics such as education. The AHA established …