The Effect of Basic and Advanced Pediatric Life Support Maneuvers
A single chest thump (CT) is widely accepted in the emergency treatment of ventricular asystole, whereas there exists controversy about this method for the interruption of ventricular tachycardia (VT). Hitherto, delivering serial chest thumps (SCTs) has been described only once for the treatment of VT. A systematic analysis for interruption of VT by CT or SCTs (or both) is lacking. We have therefore investigated this subject in five domestic pigs after experimental myocardial infarction. Manual conversion was attempted in 20 induced VTs. Six VTs were converted by CT, seven VTs were converted by the first SCTs, and six VTs were converted by the last of multiple (two to seven) SCTs. The overall success was 95%. There were no serious complications. The rate of successful SCTs exceeded the rate of VT by 10% to 126%. The technique of SCTs, the mechanisms of manual conversion, and the controversial opinions regarding the value of precordial thumping in asystole, VT, and ventricular fibrillation are discussed. SCTs should be practiced only very cautiously in patients until further experience is available.