Mouth-to-Mouth: The Lips of a Corpse

  • John Anthony Tercier
Part of the Language, Discourse, Society book series (LDS)


Mouth-to-mouth is the ‘P’ of the acronym, CPR — cardiopulmonary resuscitation, and within that resuscitative protocol, it is the B, breathing, of the ABCD mnemonic. The Humane Society recommended mouth-to-mouth ventilation in its founding document of 1774. Yet the technique was abandoned in the late 1780s, replaced by bellows ventilation, which in turn was dropped in the 1830s, replaced by a succession of manual ventilatory techniques. In the late 1950s, mouth-to-mouth was reinstated. In 2000, mouth-to-mouth again demonstrated its potential for problem behaviour in Guidelines 2000.


Eighteenth Century Humane Society Chest Compression Germ Theory Resuscitative Protocol 
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© John Anthony Tercier 2005

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  • John Anthony Tercier

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