Most dental chairs lack sufficient stability to perform effective manual chest compression (MCC) during cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). A stabilizing stool can significantly reduce backrest vertical displacement in all chair types; however, a severely curved exterior backrest may negatively impact the stool's effectiveness. This study evaluated the efficacy of 2 stool positions for stabilizing a dental chair during MCC.


Chest compressions were performed on a manikin positioned in a dental chair while vertical displacement of the chair backrest during MCC was recorded using video and measured. Vertical displacement data were captured with no stool and with a stabilizing stool in 2 different positions. Reduction ratios were calculated to evaluate the effectiveness of the 2 stool positions.


With no stool, the backrest median (interquartile range) vertical displacement during chest compressions was 16.5 (2.5) mm as compared with 12.0 (1.5) mm for the stabilizing stool positioned under the area of MCC and 8.5 (1.0) mm under the shoulders. The stool positioned under the shoulders produced a significantly increased calculated reduction ratio of 48% (14%) compared with 27% (20%) under the area of MCC (P < .001).


Positioning a stabilizing stool under the shoulders was more effective at reducing vertical displacement of the dental chair backrest during chest compressions than positioning the stool under the area of MCC.

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