Mouth-to-Mouth Ventilation of Cardiac Arrested Humans Using A Barrier Mask

Kirk C. Lufkin, Ernest Ruiz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Introduction: Concern for possible disease transmission during mouth-to-mouth resuscitation has decreased the incidence of bystander cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). Barrier masks have become available that may be effective in CPR Kas well as protective against cross-contamination. Hypothesis: A silicone rubber barrier mask incorporating a one-way-valved airway (Kiss of Life [KOL]) designed to prevent contamination of the rescuer, permits satisfactory mouth-to-mouth ventilation of victims of cardiopulmonary arrest. Methods: Ten adult patients who did not survive non-traumatic cardiac arrest were ventilated with exhaled room air using a KOL barrier mask while external cardiac massage continued. Arterial blood gases were obtained every two minutes for a maximum of 10 minutes. The operator was blinded to the results of t hese blood tests. Results: Eight men and two women with ages from 55 to 99 years were studied. Four patients were edentulous and two of these had marked mandibular atrophy. The two patients with mandibular atrophy were poorly ventilated with the barrier mask. One other patient was not ventilated successfully. This patient had undergone multiple attempts at endotracheal intubation and had transtracheal needle ventilation performed prior to use of the barrier mask. One patient had elevated PaC02 despite being well-ventilated clinically. Six patients were ventilated well clinically and had satisfactory PaCO2 and PaO2 values. Conclusion: The barrier mask studied appears to be an effective aid to ventilation in CPR Patients without facial support, as in edentulous patients with mandibular atrophy, are not ventilated well with this device. Prehospital and Disaster Medicine, 1993:8(4):333-335.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)333-335
Number of pages3
JournalPrehospital and Disaster Medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1993


  • CPR cross-contamination
  • barrier-mask
  • bystander
  • cardiac arrest
  • hepatitis HIV
  • infection
  • mouth-to-mouth ventilation
  • ventilation


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