Precordial thump

• A single precordial thump is an acceptable and possibly helpful action in a witnessed or monitored arrest when a defibrillator is not immediately available (Resuscitation Council UK 2000c).

• Give a sharp blow with a closed fist on the patient's sternum. If this is done within 30 seconds after the arrest, it may be enough to successfully convert the patient's heart back to a perfusing rhythm.

• Reassess circulation after delivery of a precordial thump.

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