Abstract 18: Can Schoolchildren provide Life Supporting First Aid sufficiently?
Aims: We investigated possible relationships between body constitution, age and sex of school children and their intellectual and physical abilities to provide effective life supporting first aid.
Methods: Our observational study was carried out at the end of a school year, after first aid training had been provided by local teachers. As primary outcomes we measured CPR effectiveness parameters (depth of chest-compressions, number of chest-compressions, ventilation volume). As secondary outcomes we rated emergency calls, guideline adherence when checking signs of life and recovery position according to predefined checklists. Possible inter-dependencies between age, sex, body mass index (BMI) and physical or intellectual performance were calculated. Correlations between continuous data were assessed by Spearman rank correlation coefficient and differences between groups were tested by Wilcoxon’s rank-sum test. A p-value < 0.05 was considered significant.
Results: We included 147 pupils at the age from 9 to 18 years. The median depth of chest-compressions was calculated at 35 mm (IQR 31– 41 mm), median number of compressions per minute was 129 bpm (IQR 108 ndash;143 bpm). Median volume applicated during mouth-to-mouth ventilation was 540 ml (IQR 0 –750 ml). Secondary outcomes are displayed in table 1⇓. BMI (r=0.35; p<0.0001), body weight (r=0.38; p=<0.0001) and body height (0.31; p=0.0002) showed statistically highly significant dependencies with chest-compression depth and ventilation volume. All other outcomes were not related to sex, age or body constitution.
Conclusions: Children above the age of 9 years showed high quality overall performance after beeing trained in life supporting techniques. Effectivness parameters obtained from adults previously seem to be comparable. Even if physical strength could limit CPR effectiveness, children should not be withheld from first aid education.