The ventilation/compression ratio influences the effectiveness of two rescuer advanced cardiac life support on a manikin

Resuscitation. 1996 Apr;31(2):113-9. doi: 10.1016/0300-9572(95)00921-3.


Time is of crucial importance during advanced cardiac life support (ACLS). Several parallel tasks have to be performed more or less simultaneously. The guidelines recommend a ventilation/ compression ratio of 1:5 in two-rescuer ACLS. This was compared with respect to time and CPR quality to an alternative method of a 2:15 ratio performed by one of the two rescuers freeing one rescuer to concentrate on other tasks than ventilation and chest compression. Seventeen paramedic students were trained in pairs in ACLS according to the European Resuscitation Council guidelines using an Ambu Mega Code trainer manikin. From a starting point of asystole paramedics were required to perform ECG analysis, intubation, i.v. access, adrenalin and atropine injection, flushing of the drug bolus before conversion to ventricular fibrillation followed by defibrillation in addition to ventilation and chest compression. Unpaired two-tailed Student t-test and the Fisher's exact test were used for statistical analysis, with a P-value less than 0.05 regarded as significant. It took significantly less time to perform successful CPR with the 2:15 ratio compared to the 1:5 ratio. The quality of the ventilations and compressions performed were not significantly different between 2:15 and 1:5 ratio. When two rescuers are performing ACLS, the 2:15 ratio method appears to be time saving vs. the 1:5. This could potentially improve the outcome after cardiac arrest.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Allied Health Personnel / education
  • Cadaver
  • Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation* / education
  • Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation* / methods
  • Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation* / standards
  • Heart Arrest / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Manikins
  • Time Factors
  • Ventilation-Perfusion Ratio