User & Survivor Stories

Prolonged use of automated CPR aids in revival of hypothermia patient

It was the middle of winter in Michigan and a 56-year-old male was found down in the snow, cold and unresponsive. At EMS’s time of arrival, he had a Glasgow Coma Scale (GSC) of 6, pinpoint pupils and was given NARCAN®, but was still unresponsive.

When he arrived at the hospital, the unresponsive patient had a GSC of 3 and CPR was initiated with the Michigan Instruments Life-Stat automated CPR device, along with intubation. He was experiencing ventricular fibrillation, considered the most serious cardiac rhythm disturbance. One attempt at defibrillation was made, but the temperature of the patient was 25 degrees Celsius, therefore, no further shocks were delivered.

The patient remained on the Life-Stat automated CPR Device, while an intravascular warming catheter was inserted into the femoral artery, and an esophageal warming device was administered. These warming devices were used in conjunction with the Life-Stat device for 3 hours and 45 minutes. During that time, his temperature rose from 25 degrees to 30 degrees Celsius. Once his temperature rose, he was given another shock, but that was unsuccessful.

He was then given an epinephrine drip and additional shocks. Finally, he did open his eyes and moved his extremities. One hour later, he was able to follow commands while still on a ventilator.

The patient was then moved to ICU where had additional tests and imaging done. He showed no signs of edema on his head or chest, and while in ICU he was weaned of the drips, extubated and slowly improved. Nine days after his arrival in the ER, he was discharged.

When asked how often the automatic CPR device was used in the hospital, Dr. Miller responded with “We use it daily, for every cardiac arrest.”

This case is just one of many examples where a Michigan Instruments automated CPR device was used to administer continuous, consistent CPR to cardiac arrest patients in a prolonged resuscitation. Light enough to be incorporated into any hospital crash cart set up, perform precise, programmed, hands-free CPR and never get tired with our Life-Stat or Thumper CPR machines.

Learn more about our automated CPR devices and how they can be used in both hospital and pre-hospital settings. Contact us today.

It’s simple to operate and frees up the staff

“We operate a rural setting and have five LIFE-STAT 1008 mechanical CPR units in operation, with great results. We were able to purchase units through a DHS Assistance to Firefighters Grant, under the EMS (non-hospital affiliated) category.

I did a lot of research on these devices before we selected Michigan Instruments’ device. What attracted our service the most to the LIFE-STAT CPR device was its ability to operate on our existing oxygen systems and also the fact that the only annual replacement cost we’ll have is a couple of inexpensive 9-volt batteries that I can get at the local drug store to maintain the settings in the microprocessor. Other devices on the market require you to replace disposable bands at a non-reimbursable cost of over $100 per patient. Some also recommend that you replace their batteries annually, at a cost of $500 each. With two batteries to be carried with those units, that would cost us $5,000 a year just in battery replacements for our five ambulances.

Operationally – It’s simple to operate and frees up the staff from tasks that can be done with more precision and consistency, and keeps our personnel from being in unsafe positions during transport.

Because of its design and extended arm, the LIFE-STAT can also be used on larger patients than the other devices. We didn’t want to spend money on a unit that would be restrictive on the size of the patients we could treat, particularly because of the increasing number of obese cardiac arrest patients encountered in the field today. You hardly ever see a thin cardiac arrest patient.”

Pike County EMS
556 North State Road
Petersburg, IN 47567
(812) 354.8796

Our crews love using the Life-Stat

“We cover 465 square miles in a tourist area of Georgia. We currently deploy two LIFE-STAT mechanical CPR devices. We’ve used Michigan Instruments’ THUMPER units since 1980. Our crews love using the LIFE-STAT because it takes the guesswork out of CPR. It’s easy to apply and only takes seconds to switch over from manual to mechanical compressions, which is important in reducing time off the chest of the patient. A human can’t match the consistency of the compressions offered by the LIFE-STAT, especially in the back of a moving ambulance.

We like how the compression device stays in the appropriate position on the sternum and can be easily adjusted to fit almost any size patient. It’s consistent with the new AHA guidelines and offers a ventilator in the unit. In continuous compression mode, the ventilator automatically interposes a breath 9 times a minute. This is important to us because we’re occasionally short of staff on cardiac arrest calls and the LIFE-STAT offers us an ‘extra person.’”

Harris County EMS
PO Box 365
Hamilton, GA 31811
(706) 628.4284

Serves as an extra resource to us on emergency scenes

“We obtained a State of Florida Department of Health rural matching grant that allowed us to purchase six LIFE-STAT 1008 CPR units. We handle over 8,000 calls a year in a rural area of Florida and frequently find ourselves running cardiac and respiratory arrest calls with limited manpower. In 2005, the only hospital in our county closed, necessitating that we transport all our patients to Tallahassee for medical care. Because of these issues and our desire to perform the highest quality CPR on our patients, we decided to evaluate mechanical CPR devices for our EMS units.

We decided to purchase the LIFE-STAT 1008 not only because of its ease of operation but because it can also be utilized as a ventilator and serve as an extra resource to us on emergency scenes, allowing our crews to handle essential ACLS functions and not be tied up with airway and compression functions en route to the hospital. We also like the fact that it operates off of our existing oxygen systems and doesn’t require us to have to worry about batteries being constantly changed out or failing during life-saving emergencies.”

Gadsden County EMS
412 E. Jefferson Street
Quincy, FL 32351
(850) 933.7927

The Life-Stat is 100% reliable

“I have been a paramedic for 30 years. I have used and depended on the Michigan Instruments (MII) Life-Stat mechanical CPR device. It delivers perfect, consistent compressions that meet the American Heart Association (AHA) standards. Manual CPR has been proven ineffective because it is physically impossible to sustain the compression rate required by the AHA for long periods of time and you can depend on the Life-Stat to deliver perfect CPR.

The Life-Stat is 100% reliable. You can count on the device working every single time you pull it out of the bag. You never have to worry about the device. It is rugged and built so sturdy and it is virtually indestructible. The setup is fast and easy. It has a side entry arm that is adjustable to patient size. All you have to do is point the arm, dial in your settings and in less than 5 seconds the patient is receiving perfect CPR compressions leaving your hands free to start other treatments needed by the patient.

Another very important feature is the open construction. This means the Life-Stat can be used on any size patient from the extremely obese all the way down to the pediatric patient. Another very important feature is that it works on the available oxygen supply that every ambulance required is to carry. If you need to ventilate your patient you have immediate access to 100% oxygen. And there are no springs, batteries or settings to worry about.

I would recommend the Life-Stat device to any emergency department who is considering the purchase the MII’s Life-Stat CPR device. It will improve the delivery and efficiency of your CPR and once it is set up you are guaranteed perfect and consistent reproducible compressions that meet the AHA guidelines.

Once you purchase the device you never have to worry about updating the equipment to meet the AHA guidelines that change every 4-5 years. Instead of re-engineering the device every time those guidelines change, MII provides new software that is easily installed onto the Life-Stat. You are always 100% compliant with the new AHA guidelines.”

315 Ridge Drive
Mt. Holly, NC 28120
(704) 860.6562

Life-Stat gives us that extra pair of hands

“I am an emergency room physician at Henry Ford Medical Center in Detroit, Michigan. Henry Ford is one of two hospitals that service the inner city of Detroit. We have one of the Michigan Instruments, (MII) Life-Stat Device in our ER. Henry Ford has used the MII Mechanical CPR equipment since the 1980’s and it is a valuable resource in providing consistent, accurate uninterrupted, chest compressions compliant with the American Heart Association (AHA) set rate guidelines.

With manual CPR, the fatigue factor comes into play. Even the best-trained physician or certified emergency personnel cannot provide accurate compressions at the sustainable AHA rate for more than a few minutes without tiring. The latest data proves that interrupted CPR is detrimental to the patient and diminishes their chance for survival. With the Life-Stat’s ability to consistently and accurately deliver consistent CPR for an extended period of time without interruption you can work more efficiently, provide better care and increase the patient’s chance for recovery. Another great benefit is that it the Life-Stat is adjustable and can be used on any size patient from the small child to the extremely obese.

In the emergency room where “time” is not always on your side the biggest benefit of the Life-Stat is that it gives us that extra pair of hands. Once you are trained and know how to use the device it sets up in seconds. There have been occasions during cardiac arrest when we have not started out with the Life-Stat and the situation becomes very chaotic. Once the Life-Stat is in place that is when you really notice how important the addition of the mechanical CPR device really is in providing the best care for the patient in cardiac arrest.”

Henry Ford Health System
2799 West Grand Blvd
Detroit, MI 48202
(313) 916.2060

Thumper helps increase people’s chances to survive

“I have worked for the Detroit Fire Department for several years. Our department headquarters is located in downtown Detroit, Michigan with emergency units located throughout the city. The Detroit fire department provides emergency services to the entire city of Detroit. Currently, multiple emergency units in the city are equipped with Michigan Instrument’s (MII) Thumper, a mechanical CPR device.

As a paramedic it is my opinion the MII mechanical CPR is the best equipment for the pre-hospital responders. It is a superb device and I have used the Thumper on many patients. The unit sets up quickly and within seconds frees me up to make contact with the physician over the radio, set up IV’s, administer narcotics, or intubation. The patient can be transported to the hospital delivering uninterrupted perfect CPR that meet the AHA guidelines.

The point is, in the real world, while the patient is receiving perfect compressions with the mechanical CPR device, I have the flexibility to freely react as needed in a very fast-moving situation. Following established protocols, we have helped to extend the life of many patients for transport to the nearest hospital. The Thumper helps us increase people’s chances to survive a cardiac arrest. Definitely!”

Detroit Fire Department
250 West Larned Street
Detroit, MI 48226
(313) 477.7774

The Life-Stat is easy to set up quickly

“I am the Regional EMS Director at the University of Alabama. We provide emergency service oversight to a lot of rural areas and the Life-Stat provides us with that 2nd and 3rd person on the scene. One of the things I really like about the Life-Stat is the ventilation component that other mechanical CPR units don’t provide. Another area that is especially helpful to us is the flexibility of the Life-Stat. It can be efficiently used in confined spaces and up and down stairways. The performance and reliability is exceptional and performance is way above expectations. It provides high-quality CPR… 100% – push hard, push fast, full release, minimizes delays and avoids hyperventilation.

We currently have 4 Life-Stats in our area. And in these economic times, you have to look at the real value… The Life-Stat is really the cheapest way to add staff at a minimum per usage cost. This is very important in these tough economic times and we will look at adding more Life-Stat units as budget allows.

The device’s track record of sustainability and life span far exceeded our expectations. With most capital expenditures you can get an average of 5 years of service. The Life-Stat is so rugged and built so well, it is going to last a really long time (for years). We started using the Michigan Instruments equipment in 1978 and even though they have changed for the better over the years, the basic function has never changed. Michigan Instruments Life-Stat is easily adaptable to the AHA (American Heart Association) guidelines they change which in-turn improves patient outcome.

The Life-Stat (is) easy to set up quickly and has a very low maintenance cost. The only cost is the minimal replacement of the two 9 volt batteries that seem to last forever and the single-use ventilation tubing.

One of the things I like most about the Life-Stat is being able to provide the needed patient care 100% of the time, but as an older emergency care provider, it saves me the physical exertion and the stress on my back and shoulder joints. If someone considering the purchase of a Life-Stat mechanical CPR device would ask my opinion, I would tell them right off… if you want to give your patients, who are in cardiac arrest, the best chance to survive and return to their families and normal productive life… then seriously look at adding the Life-Stat to your emergency team.”

University of Alabama
850 5th Ave. East
Tuscaloosa, AL 45401
(205) 799.9112 or

Life-Stat is our main tactical lifesaving tool

“For many years I have worked in a Level 1 Trauma Center in downtown Detroit. …Good organization, the right tools and a qualified staff are critical when we have a code for cardiac arrest. …We have used the “Thumper” for many years and two years ago we upgraded to Michigan Instruments’ latest CPR device, the “Life-Stat”.

…I can set up the equipment in 30 seconds. …The Life-Stat is consistent and reliable. …the flexibility of being able to use the hands-free CPR device on our larger patients is very important. We are absolutely dependent on the Life-Stat every day.

…Most people do not realize how taxing and aerobic manual CPR is for the emergency care providers. …If we do not have the Life-Stat, we need to double our staff to rotate. …Manual CPR is physically very demanding… (and) not as effective as the Life-Stat’s consistent AHA standard of 100 beats per minute.

…The Life-Stat is our main tactical lifesaving tool in the treatment of cardiac arrest. We count on the Life-Stat every day and it consistently gives the patient the best chance for survival. …I have personally witnessed, many times, patient lives that were saved because of the Life-Stat equipment.”

Level One Trauma Center
Downtown Detroit

Meet Julia

Cardiac arrest is the leading cause of death in America, but it is an event that is survivable.  Last week I had the pleasure of going down to Greensboro North Carolina to talk with Julia Sims and her family about her true, complete recovery.

Julia Sims has experienced a perfect day.  On March 19, 2011, she suffered a massive cardiac arrest, months in the making. It came as a complete surprise even after an EKG/Stress test and a professional cardiologist consultation one month prior.  A perfect combination of first-responder manual CPR, AED defibrillation, mechanical CPR, and modern rescue techniques helped her to survive the incident, but not without 12 field defibrillations and 45 minutes of uninterrupted mechanical CPR.  “It really was a perfect day.” remarks Julia at an award ceremony honoring her rescuers.  “By the grace of God I came through.”

The heart attack was preceded by vomiting, indigestion, intense back and shoulder pain, exhaustion, and more.

  • “I had had the symptoms for months.”
  • “I tried every home remedy I could find.”
  • “After two doctors told me I was fine I stopped worrying.”

The Symptoms of Cardiac Arrest in Women

Julia walked away from the experience intact and on a mission.  She had not previously been aware of the classic symptoms of impending cardiac arrest in women.  Today her goal is to educate others in this situation.  Imagine you are having a heart attack.  Most of your minds will jump immediately to a sharp pressure, perhaps even a pain in your left arm, heaviness in the chest, a feeling of extreme exhaustion, etc.  These are the classic symptoms that arise in men.  Julia’s previously mentioned symptoms (pressure/pain in the upper back, exhaustion, insomnia, vomiting, etc.)  are equally as classic in women, but seldom mentioned in standard health education courses or talked about in day to day life.

Most people would not recognize these as being the symptoms of a heart attack.  In truth, not even Julia’s family recognized them.  After multiple health consultations, they believed it to be a simple case of the flu and continued to go on about their daily lives.  Fortunately, when Julia’s arrest hit her husband and daughter were in the room and their response was immediate.  Jeff (her husband) dialed 911 and was instructed on how to deliver CPR.  Brett Sims (Julia’s Daughter) assisted.  An ambulance unit arrived on the scene four minutes later.

The Outcome

According to the AHA, about 8% of cardiac arrest victims survive. It is even rarer for someone to survive without any adverse effects.  The EMS in Greensboro proudly holds a save rate high above the national average.  Julia believes that her outcome is due largely to their competence and knowledge.  When she says that deaths caused by cardiac arrest could be further reduced by educating people about the symptoms that lead to heart attacks I am inclined to agree with her.

Keep your eyes peeled for a more in-depth report on Julia and her mission in our October newsletter.  You can sign up for our newsletter by joining our mailing list below!

See her story here on

Device saves man’s life

Was clinically dead for four minutes

August 10, 2011, By VIRGINIA SHANK – reporter ( , Tribune Chronicle |

JOHNSTON – The heart attack Leonard Osborn suffered last month hit him without warning.

The 56-year-old man said he was even more surprised to learn that his heart had stopped beating for several minutes, and if it hadn’t been for his wife, Carol, the quick response time of the Johnston Township Fire Department’s EMS crew and a mechanical CPR device used to save him, he likely would not have survived.

“I don’t remember any of it,” he remarked. “They told me later that technically I had been dead for four minutes. I was surprised to hear that. I was grateful, very grateful, but surprised.”

Osborn was sitting at the kitchen table in his Johnston home on July 21 when he fell backward. Carol Osborn, 51, said she put her husband on the floor and immediately started CPR. Family members called 911 and within minutes the EMS crew arrived and took over.

The team initiated CPR, shocked Osborn’s heart and hooked up the mechanical CPR device. The equipment is designed to provide consistent chest compressions and breathing ventilation to a person who has no heartbeat and is not breathing, explained Mary Kay Sly, one of the first members of the department’s EMS crew to respond to the call.

“It was amazing to see how it worked and to know how effective of a tool it really is,” said Sly, who is also a correspondent for the Tribune Chronicle.

The Johnston Fire Department purchased two mechanical CPR devices for about $12,000 each last year using funds from a Federal Emergency Management Agency grant.

Sly said they were well worth the price.

The device is recommended for all cardiac arrests, explained Dr. Jeffrey Bedlion, medical director for Johnston Township EMS. He said although variations of the equipment have been around for many years, using them on a regular basis fell by the wayside until recently.

Still, it is not yet a common piece of equipment for fire departments and emergency service responders, he noted.

“The thing to remember is that this is a very important step in the whole process,” he said. “But it’s not the only one. This was a good save.”

Bedlion said mechanical CPR surpasses CPR given by a person because the machine can guarantee the rate, depth and quality of the compressions. Plus, use of it eliminates human fatigue.

“There is no way a person could keep up with the amount of compressions it often takes in a situation like this,” Bedlion said, noting use of the device also frees up rescue providers to perform other tasks and helps avoid any breaks in the CPR process.

Last week, after being released from the hospital on Aug. 1, Osborn and his wife visited the Johnston Township Fire Department to meet and thank the EMS crew that saved his life.

“I owe them big,” he said Tuesday during telephone conversation. “I never had anything like that happen before. I never expected it. I never had any signs or any warning or anything. It just happened. I’m just glad to be alive.”

Sly said Osborn regained a spontaneous pulse enroute to St. Joseph Health Center’s emergency department “approximately 16 minutes after he first clinically died.” She said the resuscitation team at the Warren hospital continued the aggressive medical treatment on Osborn, where he was admitted to the intensive care unit before being transferred to Cleveland for a cardiac procedure and eventually discharged to go home.

“I have been in EMS for 23 years and this is the most joyful day of my life besides my wedding,” Sly said. “To know that my hands made a difference in someone life makes the job all the more worthwhile.”