A pilot study to determine whether undergraduate paramedics are able to retain basic resuscitation and respiratory physiology knowledge

Ziad Nehme, Malcolm Boyle



While suboptimal bag ventilation has been well documented during cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), we often do not consider how operator knowledge of ventilation guidelines may contribute to this outcome. The objective of this pilot study was to evaluate third year Monash University undergraduate paramedic students' knowledge of the International Liaison Committee on Resuscitation (ILCOR) ventilation guidelines and basic respiratory physiology.


A cross-sectional study was used to elicit responses about ventilation rate, tidal volume and knowledge of lower oesophageal sphincter pressure in normal and cardiac arrest states for third year undergraduate paramedic students at Monash University. Ethics approval was granted


There were 30 (41%) third year students who participated. Only 8 (27%) of the students who participated could identify the correct ventilation rate for an intubated patient in a cardiac arrest situation, with only 3 (10%) of students identifying the correct tidal volume. Overall, 27 (90%) of students had a poor knowledge of ventilation guidelines while 29 (97%) students were unable to recall basic lower oesophageal sphincter pressure values.


A greater emphasis on education of current ventilation guidelines, as well as the underpinning knowledge surrounding the guidelines, is needed to ensure students attain appropriate ventilation during CPR.


cardiopulmonary resuscitation; emergency medical services; hyperventilation; hypoventilation; pulmonary ventilation; tidal volume

Full Text:


DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.33151/ajp.8.2.100


  • There are currently no refbacks.

The Official Journal of Paramedics Australasia © 2019                           ISSN: 2202-7270


Crossref Member Badge