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CPR in medical TV shows: non-health care student perspective

Authors Alismail A, Meyer NC, Almutairi W, Daher NS

Received 12 July 2017

Accepted for publication 8 December 2017

Published 7 February 2018 Volume 2018:9 Pages 85—91


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Md Anwarul Majumder

Abdullah Alismail,1 Nicole C Meyer,2 Waleed Almutairi,1 Noha S Daher3

1Cardiopulmonary Sciences Department, School of Allied Health Professions, Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, CA, USA; 2Respiratory Care Department, Loma Linda University Children’s Hospital, Loma Linda, CA, USA; 3Department of Allied Health Studies, School of Allied Health Professions, Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, CA, USA

Introduction: There are over a dozen medical shows airing on television, many of which are during prime time. Researchers have recently become more interested in the role of these shows, and the awareness on cardiopulmonary resuscitation. Several cases have been reported where a lay person resuscitated a family member using medical TV shows as a reference. The purpose of this study is to examine and evaluate college students’ perception on cardiopulmonary resuscitation and when to shock using an automated external defibrillator based on their experience of watching medical TV shows.
Methods: A total of 170 students (nonmedical major) were surveyed in four different colleges in the United States. The survey consisted of questions that reflect their perception and knowledge acquired from watching medical TV shows. A stepwise regression was used to determine the significant predictors of “How often do you watch medical drama TV shows” in addition to chi-square analysis for nominal variables.
Results: Regression model showed significant effect that TV shows did change students’ perception positively (p<0.001), and they would select shock on asystole as the frequency of watching increases (p=0.023).
Conclusion: The findings of this study show that high percentage of nonmedical college students are influenced significantly by medical shows. One particular influence is the false belief about when a shock using the automated external defibrillator (AED) is appropriate as it is portrayed falsely in most medical shows. This finding raises a concern about how these shows portray basic life support, especially when not following American Heart Association (AHA) guidelines. We recommend the medical advisors in these shows to use AHA guidelines and AHA to expand its expenditures to include medical shows to educate the public on the appropriate action to rescue an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest patient.

Keywords: medical shows, cardiopulmonary resuscitation, CPR, college student

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