1. Check for responsiveness. Shake or tap the person gently. See if the person moves or makes a noise. Shout, Are you OK?
2. Call 911 if there is no response. Shout for help and send someone to call 911. If you are alone, call 911 and retrieve an automated external defibrillator (AED) if one is available, even if you have to leave the person.
3. Carefully place the person on their back. If there is a chance the person has a spinal injury, two people should move the person to prevent the head and neck from twisting.
4. Perform chest compressions:
5. Open the airway. Lift up the chin with 2 fingers. At the same time, push down on the forehead with the other hand.
6. Look, listen, and feel for breathing. Place your ear close to the person's mouth and nose. Watch for chest movement. Feel for breath on your cheek.
7. If the person is not breathing or has trouble breathing:
8. Continue CPR (30 chest compressions followed by 2 breaths, then repeat) until the person recovers or help arrives. If an AED for adults is available, use it as soon as possible.
Review Date: 2/12/2021
Reviewed By: Jesse Borke, MD, CPE, FAAEM, FACEP, Attending Physician at Kaiser Permanente, Orange County, CA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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