Automated External Defibrillator (AED)

Definition - What does Automated External Defibrillator (AED) mean?

An automated external defibrillator (AED) is a mobile electronic device used by first responders (or other trained individuals) to deliver a shock to the hearts of patients in cardiac arrest. The automated external defibrillator applies an electrical shock to the patient's heart that is designed to stops the arrhythmia and returns the heart to revert back to its normal rhythm. It is important to note that improper use of an AED can be fatal.

WorkplaceTesting explains Automated External Defibrillator (AED)

An automated external defibrillator is comprised of an electrode pad, battery and AED device. Training in the use of an AED is often given to first responders and designated employees in companies and venues where the devices are installed. It is important to note that while instructions are included with these devices, they are not designed to be used by untrained individuals and use by untrained individuals can result in death of the victim.

An automated external defibrillator can treat ventricular fibrillation and pulseless ventricular tachycardia, which are arrhythmias that prevent the heart from pumping and circulating blood effectively. If left untreated, these cardiac arrhythmias can result in possible brain damage or death.

An automated external defibrillator is often installed in the workplace in order to provide emergency assistance faster than waiting on first responders. Training is provided to a small group of designated employees or health professionals at the location as the first 10 minutes of a cardiac incident is the most vital for treatment.

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