Empty milk bottles to practice CPR? You must be joking, right?

Well, initially, yes I was. But then I got thinking.
The problem with many CPR courses are that they involve the use of very costly manikins to train and assess the participants. This leads to expensive courses. Courses  that limit the number of trainees depending on numbers of available manikins, and are relatively immobile due to the difficulty lugging the equipment around from place to place.

The skills required to generate effective CPR and the confidence to actually commence it when it is needed should be taught to the community at large…and for free.
Not just to those who can afford to enroll in these sorts of courses. After all its not rocket science.
And when someone has a cardiac arrest, it is surely better to do something than to stand around doing nothing.

And what about areas of the community that simply do not have access to professionally run courses. What if we could teach these people the basics of CPR using a few simple household items. Lets get these skill out there.

The above video is a simple suggestion for providing an experience that (with a little imagination and some effective teaching) feels not too shabby compared to real CPR. It is easily transportable and can be used to teach large groups of people at one time.

Milk Bottle CPR can also be used very effectively as a platform to teach paediatric CPR techniques, and who knows, perhaps in the future they might print some guidelines right on the containers themselves. By just getting this information out there and giving people the opportunity to actually get some experience of how it feels to give CPR may result in someone who might otherwise stand back, actually stepping up and saving a life.

This video is just intended to demonstrate the idea of using milk containers, my actual CPR is a perhaps a little *ahem* lax. For a more detailed explanation of actual CPR technique you might like to read this and watch this.

8 Responses to “Milk Bottle CPR.”

  1. I thought that was very creative. The voice (yours?) was pleasant to listen to, too. :)

  2. Proper form is to keep your elbows locked while doing compressions. Good idea with the jugs though.

  3. I think that’s a great idea. I’m going to try it to refresh my crew at work and teach my family at home. I think it can help when manikins are not available.

    I realize your not creating an instructional CPR video but I do want to comment on your technique. You emphasize correct posture and positioning in the audio but your video demonstration shows excessive bending at the elbows during compression. Your arms should be straight so you can depress the chest enough to facilitate blood flow. It doesn’t help to lower your body up and down when that is being absorbed by flexing elbows. It will just tire you out after several minutes on a real person. I’ve performed CPR at emergencies over a hundred times unfortunately. When viewing from the side view, you also want to be straight above the chest and pushing directly downward as much as possible and not at an angle it that’s avoidable. You want to use the weight of your body, with straight arms to compress the chest, not your arm strength. You will last a lot longer and produce better circulation.

    Disclaimer: Please always follow the CPR protocols of your local authority having jurisdiction.

  4. Highly practical solution. I was also impressed with the orientation of the second bottle where the handle became the bridge of the nose. Was that a pistol grip on the chin? Imagination really is more important than knowledge!

  5. This is brilliant.

    Cheap and more widely available Education, and recycling in one.

    Seems like a win-win.

  6. Just discovered your site….

    Milk Bottle CPR?? Never would have guessed…!

    From the video, however, it makes sense

  7. The ambulance service (VIC I think) has produced pillowcases with the landmarks printed on them. This is to allow more people to be trained at once. One of the problems I see is there is no resistance with the compressions, but it is a cost effective alternative. Maybe they can include a milkbottle?

  8. This is exactly why you are one of the best educators, let alone nurse. Creative solutions to problems everyone faces. Keep up the good work!

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