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Adult CPR Steps

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Dec 2, 2022.


CPR can save a person's life. Do compressions even if you cannot give rescue breaths.
  • Check the person:
    • Check Responsiveness on an Adult
  • Start compressions:
    • Kneel beside the person's chest.
    • Put one of your hands on top of the other.
    • Put the heel of your bottom hand where the person's ribs meet in the middle of his or her chest, between the nipples.
    • Press straight down on the sternum (breastbone) at least 2 inches (5 centimeters).
    • Do 30 chest compressions at a rate of at least 100 to 120 every minute (2 per second).
    • Count the compressions out loud to help you do them at a steady, even speed.
    • Chest Compression on an Adult
  • Give 2 rescue breaths:
    • Place one hand on the person's forehead and 2 fingers under the chin.
    • Tilt the head back and open the mouth.
    • Gently pinch the person's nose closed.
    • Take a deep breath and put your lips around the person's mouth, making an airtight seal.
    • Blow into the person's mouth. His or her chest will rise with each breath if air is going into the lungs.
    • Let the persons's chest fall before giving another breath.
    • Rescue Breaths on an Adult
  • Repeat the cycle of 30 compressions and 2 breaths for 5 cycles .
  • CALL:
    • Your local emergency number (911 in the US)
  • Continue CPR until help arrives or the person begins to respond.

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