In Focus:

Women less likely than men to receive CPR from passerby

If you suffer cardiac arrest in public, just being a woman means you’re less likely to receive potentially life-saving CPR from a passerby, according to a new study.

One theory to explain the discrepancy: Strangers may be reluctant to undo a woman’s clothing and touch her breasts, even if it means they can save her life, says a lead researcher on the study.

“This is not a time to be squeamish,” said Dr. Benjamin Abella of the University of Pennsylvania, who urged strangers to get over their inhibitions and help in an emergency.

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