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26th Annual National Collegiate EMS Conference

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"Hacking the Human Brain" Addressing Real Life Fears in Resuscitation Education

Encountering a victim of sudden cardiac arrest is frightening. Witnessing the collapse of a family member or friend is terrifying. Agonal breathing, seizures and posturing are likely to significantly increase fear and add confusion among potential rescuers to the point of unwillingness or inability to act. Phobias and fears come in all shapes and sizes: closed places, heights, escalators, tunnels, highway driving, water, flying, dogs, spiders, snakes and the sight of blood are common objects of phobia-like anxiety. Based on available evidence, it is reasonable to qualify fear as a significant barrier to bystander initiated CPR. Explore this subject and learn of innovative methods for helping people address fear and break the link between the feared situation and the panic reaction through controlled exposure.


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