Registered Nurse (RN)
Professional Standards of Nursing
Prioritizing Care
Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) for Adults

Master Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) for Adults with Picmonic for Nursing RN

With Picmonic, facts become pictures. We've taken what the science shows - image mnemonics work - but we've boosted the effectiveness by building and associating memorable characters, interesting audio stories, and built-in quizzing.

Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) for Adults

Recommended Picmonics

picmonic thumbnail
Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs
picmonic thumbnail
Airway, Breathing, Circulation (ABC's)
picmonic thumbnail
Guidelines for Prioritizing
picmonic thumbnail
The Nursing Process
picmonic thumbnail
Glasgow Coma Scale

Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) for Adults

Cardiopulmonary Rescuer and Adult
Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) can help save a life during a cardiac or breathing emergency. There are seven basic steps to the CPR process. The process first begins by scanning the scene for safety, activating the emergency response system (calling for help, and obtaining an automated external defibrillator), opening the person’s airway and checking for breathing. When it is apparent that the person needs CPR, chest compressions should begin at a rate of 100 to 120/min and to a depth of at least 2 inches (5 cm) for an average adult. For healthcare providers, CPR using chest compressions and mouth-to-mouth breathing at a ratio of 30:2 (cycles of 30 compressions, 2 breaths). For the general public who are not formally trained, compression-only CPR ( CPR without mouth-to-mouth breaths) is recommended. CPR should be performed until the person exhibits breathing, an AED becomes available, or help arrives on the scene.
Scan Scene
Scanning Scene

The first step before performing CPR is to check the scene and the person. The healthcare provider must ensure that the scene is safe for them to enter. Once safety is established, the healthcare provider should tap the person on the shoulder and shout "Are you OK?" This is a rapid assessment to make sure that the person does in fact need help.

Activate Emergency Response System
Action-clapper Emergency-lights Response Speech-bubble

If the person does in fact need help, call for assistance. If not in a hospital setting, call 911 (or have someone call 911) and send someone else to obtain an automated external defibrillator (AED).

Check For Breathing (Max 10 Seconds)
Check Breathing with (10) Tin

At this point, check to see if the person is breathing. Look and listen carefully, watch the chest for a rise and fall. Do this for no more than 10 seconds. If there is no breathing, it is time to begin CPR.

Open Airway
Open-sign Airway

The next step is to open the airway. With the person lying on their back, tilt the head back slightly to lift the chin.

Compressions: 2 Inches Deep (100-120 Compressions/Min)
Compressing with (2) Tutu

Compressions should be hard and fast. Hands should be placed in the middle of the chest, one on top of the other. Compressions should be delivered at a rate of 100-120 compressions per minute, at least 2 inches deep.

Airway: Ensure Airway is Still Open
Open-sign Airway

Before administering rescue breaths, you must ensure that the airway is still accessible to receive the air.

Breathing: Administer 2 Rescue Breaths
Breathing (2) Tutu

After making the airway accessible by tilting the person’s head back slightly and lifting the chin, two breaths should be delivered. Blow into the person's mouth to make the chest rise. After the two rescue breaths, compressions should be continued.

Repeat C-A-B Sequence (30:2) Until Help Arrives
Repeat-sign Cab

The CPR sequence of 30 compressions to 2 breaths should be performed until the person exhibits breathing, an AED becomes available, or help arrives on the scene.


Take the Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) for Adults Quiz

Picmonic's rapid review multiple-choice quiz allows you to assess your knowledge.

It's worth every penny

Our Story Mnemonics Increase Mastery and Retention

Memorize facts with phonetic mnemonics

Unforgettable characters with concise but impactful videos (2-4 min each)

Memorize facts with phonetic mnemonics

Ace Your Registered Nurse (RN) Classes & Exams with Picmonic:

Over 1,910,000 students use Picmonic’s picture mnemonics to improve knowledge, retention, and exam performance.

Choose the #1 Registered Nurse (RN) student study app.

Picmonic for Registered Nurse (RN) covers information that is relevant to your entire Registered Nurse (RN) education. Whether you’re studying for your classes or getting ready to conquer your NCLEX®-RN, Hesi, ATI, TEAS test, Kaplan exams, we’re here to help.

Works better than traditional Registered Nurse (RN) flashcards.

Research shows that students who use Picmonic see a 331% improvement in memory retention and a 50% improvement in test scores.