AED stands for‘ Automated External Defibrillator’, which is a device that detects lethal heart rhythms which stop the heart from pumping effectively, and then allows a rescuer to deliver a measured shock to a revert these rhythms, so the heart can pump effectively again.
- The only method available to revert lethal cardiac arrest rhythms is the use of a defibrillator e.g. AED.
- Statistically, for every minute lost without defibrillation, you lose 10% probability of saving a life (With good CPR you can extend this by several more minutes!)
- The ‘Average Ambulance Response Time in major metropolitan cities of Australia is approximately 16 minutes.
- If you apply a measured shock to a person’s heart, suffering a lethal rhythm within the first minute, they have a 70%chance of survival.
Are they safe to use?
Yes they are. The AED talks you through the process giving very simple directions on what to do and when.
Will I kill someone using a defibrillator?
No! AED’s will only deliver a shock to a heart if it detects a lethal rhythm via electrodes you stick to the person’s chest. These electrodes have sensors in them, and if they detect a normal heart rhythm they WILL NOT deliver a shock.
When do I use one?
You use a defibrillator when you need to undertake CPR, which is performed on an unconscious person who is not breathing normally e.g. regular, rhythmic breathing.