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To evaluate the past and present literature on ventilation during out of hospital cardiac arrest, highlighting research that has informed current guidelines.Previous studies have studied what are optimal compression-to-ventilation ratios, ventilation rates, and methods of ventilation. Continuous chest compression cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) has not shown to provide a significant survival benefit over the traditional 30 : 2 CPR. The optimal ventilation rate is recommended at 8 to 10 breaths per minute. Methods such as capnography and thoracic impedance are being used to evaluate ventilation in research studies.Future out of hospital cardiac arrest studies are still exploring how to optimize the delivery of ventilation during the initial stages of resuscitation. More prospective studies focusing on ventilation are needed to inform guidelines.