Automated External Defibrillator (AED):

An Automated External Defibrillator (AED) is a device used in sudden cases of cardiac arrest. It helps analyze a person’s heart rate for irregularities, and if needed, can shock a heart back into rhythm. Following these steps can ensure that you know how to properly operate an AED and render aid when needed:

  1. Call 9-1-1, or have someone call for you. The 9-1-1 dispatcher can also assist you with care if needed.
  2. Determine if an AED needs to be used. The following are situations in which an AED should be used:
  • The person is unresponsive and not breathing or not breathing normally.
  • The person's pulse is not detectable.
  •  The person has collapsed and is not responding to any stimuli. 
  1. Check your environment. If the environment is not safe, move the person to a safer location.
  2. Each AED is different. Read the instructions printed on the AED. Most AEDs provide voice prompts to guide anyone through the process.
  3. Expose the person’s chest and attach the pads on the patient’s upper-right chest and lower-left ribcage. The pads will analyze the heart rhythm and advise if a shock is needed.
  4. If a shock is advised, ensure nobody is touching the patient, and press the shock button.
  5. If no shock is advised, begin CPR until emergency services arrive.
  6. The AED will continue to monitor the patient and will announce if a shock is necessary.

The AED is crucial to immediate care for cardiac arrest patients. By following these steps, you can successfully assist someone having a possible cardiac arrest by using an AED.

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