In the event of a heart attack, immediate action is necessary if the victim is to have any chance of survival. Heart attacks are one of the leading causes of death in the US; a full two thirds of victims will succumb if they are not helped with a defibrillator such as a LIFEPAK 1000, a portable device.
When the heart goes into ventricular defibrillation it requires a shock to bring it back into its regular pattern. Ventricular defibrillation occurs when the heart’s electrical activity fails. In this situation, the lower chamber of the heart begins rapid contractions resulting in a loss of heart beat, all that happens is a very rapid flutter but the heart is not pumping blood as normal. When the heart ceases to beat, blood is not pumped to the body and within a matter of minutes, the person will die.
If the heart attack victim is given immediate care, the chance of survival is quite good, the care the victim needs can only be given by a defibrillator.
It used to be that the only place where the victim could get assistance with defibrillation was in a hospital but today there are portable models which can be used in the event of an emergency and there is no hope of quick response by medical personnel. Although it is best that the operator of the AED, automated external defibrillator has received training but if not, even the uninitiated can use these devices with little knowledge. It is not that the LIFEPAK 1000 is difficult to operate, it is not; the concern is the possibility of the person using the device or others nearby will get a significant shock if the victim’s body is touched while being defibrillated. Most people have seen movies where a heart attack victim is being rushed into a hospital emergency ward, a defibrillator is applied and the word “clear” is shouted.
As well as the possibility of receiving a nasty shock, the untrained individual may also subject the victim to burns. Although these are risks, they are acceptable as the AED is so sophisticated that it is impossible to use if the victim still has a pulse.
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