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Jude, James

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James Jude

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James Jude
(June 7, 1928 - July 28, 2015 )
Born in United States
Year of Discovery:


Surgeon Discovers Way to Restart Hearts Without Cutting!

James Jude, a cardiac surgeon in Florida, was part of a team of researchers that studied and perfected the chest compression method of external cardiac massage, a key element of Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR).  Closed-chest massage could maintain up to 40 percent of normal circulation; enough to save a life until the heart could successfully be restarted.  He credits the beginning of his journey to this life saving discovery with marrying a women from Baltimore between his second and third year of medical school, and the series of events that followed.

When Jude got married, he left the University of Minnesota and began his training at Johns Hopkins since it was in Baltimore, the home of his wife.  His research at Hopkins in the mid 1950s focused on the rate that a body should optimally be rewarmed following hypothermia.  Jude conducted his experiments in a new laboratory, situated just down the hallway from William Kouwenhoven’s laboratory which was studying the effects of electricity on humans.  Kouwenhoven, with the help of his graduate student, Guy Knickerbocker, was developing an external defibrillator, which would be very useful in restarting the hearts of Jude’s hypothermic rats.

Jude was in the laboratory one Saturday when Knickerbocker mentioned an observation that he had while conducting his defibrillation experiments.  He told him how he detected a brief, temporary rise in blood pressure when the heavy copper electrodes were applied to the chest wall of a dog whose heart had stopped beating.   Dr. Jude immediately recognized the significance of the observation, it was external cardiac massage! 

Jude, Kouwenhoven and Knickerbocker quickly expanded the research experiments to determine if forceful, rhythmic pressure on the chest could cause enough blood to move through the body to sustain the vital organs.  After a year of careful studies, they found that by performing external cardiac massage, they could extend the time to successful defibrillation (heart re-starting) and survival of a dog to over an hour!  The team presented their exciting results to the director of the Department of Surgery, who gave permission for their work to be applied clinically, to actual patients.  The first documented and successful case of their method being used on a human patient, a 35 year old woman, was in July 1959. 

In 1960 the results were published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).  They reported that 70% of the patients survived and were discharged from the hospital. The duration of chest compressions ranged from less than 1 minute to over an hour.  The message was very clear: chest compressions buy time until the external defibrillator arrives to restart the heart with an electric jolt.  "Anyone, anywhere, can now initiate cardiac resuscitative procedures. All that is needed is two hands" – JAMA 1960.

In the early 1960s Drs. Jude and Kouwenhoven travelled the United States and Puerto Rico presenting their method of external cardiac massage, combined with mouth to mouth resuscitation, creating CardioPulmonary Resuscitation (CPR).  In 1962 the training video, "The Pulse of Life” was created by Jude, Knickerbocker and Peter Safar.    Kouwenhoven, Jude and Knickerbocker received the Hektoen Gold Medal of the American Medical Association for their work.



Introduction by April Ingram


Table of Contents

Introduction Exclusive Interview
Links to More Information About the Scientist
Key Insight
Key Experiment or Research
Key Contributors
Quotes by the Scientist
Quotes About the Scientist
Fun Trivia About The Science
The Science Behind the Discovery
Personal Information
Science Discovery Timeline
Recommended Books About the Science
Books by the Scientist
Books About the Scientist
Major Academic Papers
Curriculum Vitae
Links to Science and Related Information on the Subject


Spotlight on Jude Exclusive Jan 2010 Interview

Links to More About the Scientist & the Science
Obituary -
AXA Advisors Lifetime Achievement Award Honoree

Key Insight

Key Experiments or Research

Key Contributors

The Team
Explore other scientists who furthered this lifesaving advance.
Lifesavers Who

Developed CPR
Peter Safar
The Father of CPR, taught regular people to be lifesavers.
James Elam
Spearheaded the development of Resusci-Anne, a life-like manikin to teach CPR.
G. Guy Knickerbocker
Proved that chest compressions, using the hands, were sufficient to extend life in emergencies.
William Kouwenhoven
Proved that chest compressions, using the hands, were sufficient to extend life in emergencies.

Quotes by the Scientist

Quotes About the Scientist


Fun Trivia About the Science

The Science Behind the Discovery

Personal Information

Scientific Discovery Timeline

Recommended Books About the Science

Books by the Scientist

Books About the Scientist



Major Academic Papers Written by the Scientist

Jude, J.R., 2003. Personal Reminiscences of the Origin and History of Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR). Am Jr. of Cardiology 92:956-963.

Curriculum Vitae

Academic History: College of St. Thomas, St. Paul MN, 3 years1946-1949; Univ. of MN Medical School, 1949-1953 (BS 1950 MD 1953.

Career Appointments and Positions: Instructor in Surgery, JHU 1961-62; Asst. Prof of Surgery, JHU 1962-4; Prof. of Surgery, Univ. of Miami 1964-1971; Clinical Prof of Surgery, Univ. of Miami 1971-present.

Awards / Prizes: Hektoen Gold Medal, 1962; Hopkins Scholar, 2006

Links to Information on the Science