Paediatric Basic Life Support

It is often asked at what age a responder should use the paediatric rather than adult algorithm. This is usually used if the patient is pre pubertal.

The paediatric life support algorithm is similar to that of the adult algorithm. The main differences are on identifying the paediatric patient is not breathing 5 rescue breaths/ventilations should be delivered before checking for further signs of life e.g. a pulse. If after the 5 rescue breaths/ventilations have been delivered and there is no sign of life then then 15 chest compressions should be administered.

In a child these are delivered at a depth of 5cm while in an infant 4cm. The rate of compressions remains as 100-120 per minute but the ratio of compressions to breathes is 15 compressions to 2 breathes