CPR Developer Recognized at 2014 ECCU Conference

Editor-in-Chief A.J. Heightman reports from the ECCU conference in Las Vegas

 

 
 
 

A.J. Heightman, MPA, EMT-P | | Wednesday, June 4, 2014

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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

Cardiac conference salutes survivors and experts.
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Famous CPR and cardiac resuscitation researcher/engineer Guy Knickerbocker, now 82, made a special appearance at the 2014 ECCU Conference in Las Vegas on Tuesday and was recognized for his part in the development of CPR and other resuscitative measures that have saved countless lives.

In 1954, Knickerbocker, a Baltimore native, began working toward his PhD in electrical engineering at Johns Hopkins University in the laboratory of William Kouwenhoven.  Knickerbocker’s was a dedicated engineer who worked long hours in the Johns Hopkins lab and made key observations that led to the development of devices to restart stopped or quivering hearts, and a method to sustain circulation long enough to save lives. His teammate, James Jude, M.D. was quoted as say that Knickerbocker’s discovery was “A chance observation to a fertile young mind.”  
 
In 1958, William Kouwenhoven’s laboratory had received funding from the Edison Electric Institute and National Institute of Health to develop a portable defibrillator that would be useful for electric companies to treat their utility linemen who suffered electrocution.1  

Knickerbocker, a dedicated researcher who frequently came into the lab on weekends, made a crucial observation one Saturday when he noticed that there was a brief, temporary rise in blood pressure that occurred when heavy copper electrodes were applied to the chest wall of a dog whose heart had stopped beating and the dog was kept alive with manual heart massage while the electrodes were being retrieved from another area of the hospital.

Knickerbocker told Dr. James Jude, a cardiac surgeon about his discovery and the rest is history. Dr. Jude immediately recognized the significance of the Knickerbocker’s observation, it was external cardiac massage. The team of Jude, Kouwenhoven and Knickerbocker duplicated and elaborated on the experiments and found that they could extend the time to successful defibrillation and survival of dog to over an hour with external massage by way of chest compressions.  The first documented, successful case of their method being used on a human patient, a 35 year old woman, was in July 1959.2  

In the early 1960s members of the Johns Hopkins team travelled the United States and Puerto Rico presenting their method of external cardiac massage, combined with mouth to mouth resuscitation – what we now know as CPR. In 1962 a training video called "The Pulse of Life” was created by Jude, Knickerbocker and Peter Safar. Kouwenhoven, Jude and Knickerbocker received the Hektoen Gold Medal of the American Medical Association for their work.

Knickerbocker’s dedication to the perfection and promotion of CPR also had a personal connection; his father received CPR in 1963 when he arrested while recovering from a heart attack.

Footnote: 1-2   www.scienceheroes.com

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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

Dr. Guy Knickerbacher, one of the three individuals responsible for developing the CPR procedures, was on hand for the conference opening and received a standing ovation from not just the ECCU attendess, but also two dozen cardiac arrest survivors on hand for the conference and a special Survivors' banquet which will be held Wednesday evening. (A.J. Heightman photo)


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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

ECCU Conference Chair, Ed Stapleton, welcomes attendees. (A.J. Heightman photo)


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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

Cardiac arrest survivors salute one of the notable CPR creators, Dr. Guy Knickerbacker. (A.J. Heightman photo)


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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

Mary Newman, President of the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation, introduces CBS national new anchor Susan Koeppen, a cardiac arrest survivor who was resuscitated during a marathon in Pittsburgh last year. (A.J. Heightman photo)


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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

CBS News anchor, Susan Koeppen addresses the ECCU audience and shows them a photo of her in critical condition after suffering cardiac arrest. She was saved by rapid CPR, a fire department AED, ALS, and therapeutic hypothermia. (A.J. Heightman photo)


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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

Susan during her hospital time. (A.J. Heightman photo)


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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

Susan with the Pittsburgh EMS crew that saved her life along with two medical students who were driving by when she collapsed during her practice run for the marathon and stopped to perform CPR on her. (A.J. Heightman photo)


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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

Cardiac arrest survivor Susan Koeppen. (A.J. Heightman photo)


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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

Susan with her husband and three children. (A.J. Heightman photo)


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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

Dr. Bill Montgomery and Dr. Viney Nadkami lead a panel of experts lookin from the "Catbird seat" at where the 2015 Resuscitation Guidelines might be going. (A.J. Heightman photo)


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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas



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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

Important data on the need to stay within the 100-120 rate of compressions. (A.J. Heightman photo)


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The evidence of the impact of feedback devices and processes. (A.J. Heightman photo)


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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

Final Consensus Recommendations (A.J. Heightman photo)


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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

Famous Resuscitation and ROC researcher, Ahamed Idris, an EMS-10 Award winner (2014) reviewed the critical importance of reducing interruptions in chest compression s and the tremendous results they have had in Dallas (Dallas Fire Rescue) in improving resuscitation and survival results through use of a metronome. (A.J. Heightman photo)


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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

The tremendous results of enhanced training, coordinated resuscitation and metronome use in the greater Dallas BITE EMS region. (A.J. Heightman photo)


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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

More evidence (presented by Dr. Ahamed Idris) on the importance of compression depth.(A.J. Heightman photo)


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ECCU Conference, Las Vegas

Denver Health Medical Director, Chris Collwel, addressed sedation of cardiac arrest patients at Wednesday's ECCU Conference and said that our goal in cardiovascular is quick sedation, no long lasting effects and no hypoxia. He said that, in his opinion and experience, the best drug to use is propofol in the correct dosage and will be adding it to Denver in the future.(A.J. Heightman photo)



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Related Topics: News, ECCU, cardiac arrest survivors, cpr, AJ Heightman

 
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A.J. Heightman, MPA, EMT-P

JEMS Editor-in-Chief A.J. Heightman, MPA, EMT-P, has a background as an EMS director and EMS operations director. He specializes in MCI management.

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