Stayin’ Alive may keep you alive

Dr. David Matlock of the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Peoria is responsible for the song going through your head right now.

At a recent American College of Emergency Physicians conference, Dr. Matlock announced that the Bee Gees song “Stayin’ Alive” from the 1977 hit movie “Saturday Night Fever” could help save a life.  With 103 beats a minute, the song has almost the perfect pace (100 beats a minute) for performing chest compressions on a person who has had a heart attack.

“We not advocating turning on the song in the middle of a resuscitation,” Matlock laughed. “If it helps people to sing it out loud, I guess that’s OK.”

Doing compressions correctly can triple the survival rate according to Matlock’s team. For the study, 15 doctors and medical students practiced compressions while listening to the song. They were retested without the song five weeks later and performed an average 113 compressions a minute, within the acceptable range.