This Article is About
heart rhythm
lack of oxygen
vital organs
brain damage
cardiac arrest
medical condition
Do You Know What A Defibrillator Does?
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There are various types of defibrillators but they all do a similar job just in a slightly different way. There are external ones that you will find at various locations including your local shopping mall, cinema, baseball court etc. If you have an existing medical condition, your doctor may have suggested you get an internal one.

The aim of both types is to return your heart rhythm to a normal reading as an abnormal one can lead to a cardiac arrest. The hearts main function is to pump blood and oxygen around the body. It works at optimum levels when your heart rhythm is normal. When the heart malfunctions, the rhythm changes which leads to problems with the pumping mechanism. This is turn causes issues with the oxygen supply to vital organs including your brain. Left untreated it can lead to death or severe brain damage.

The body responds to a lack of oxygen by causing you to lose consciousness. But although this can buy you some extra minutes you will die unless an AED is used to return your heart rhythm to normal levels. An AED delivers a shock to your heart which should get the rhythm back to normal. It doesn’t always work but the technology has saved numerous lives. If you have a medical condition which predisposes you to cardiac arrest your doctor may recommend you have an implantable cardioverter defibrillator put into your heart.

The device acts in much the same way as an AED. It will deliver a shock if your heart rhythm doesn’t stay within a specific range. Alternatively your doctor may prefer to treat your condition with pills. While it is important to seek a second medical opinion if you are not 100% happy with your doctor you should never act on advice you read on the internet. Only your medical personnel are familiar with your personal health history and they are properly qualified to assess your condition or refer you to a specialist. Some people are wary of having a defibrillator fitted but although the devices have been improved over the years, the principles remain similar to those introduced in the 1960's. So there have been plenty of medical tests and experiments carried out to check the safety of these devices.

Why cant I depend on an AED? If you are predisposed to a cardiac arrest do you really want to take the risk that an automated external defibrillator will be available to you? Or that someone nearby will know how to use it? Although we should have more AEDs and more people with AED training the fact is that at the moment there is a shortage. If your doctor recommends an internal device follow his advice!

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