LIFE-SAVING TECHNIQUES – The Automated External Defibrillator

Life-saving techniques require a specific sequence. Any inappropriate or sloppy movements may only worsen the victim’s medical condition. Therefore, basic first aid training is highly recommended.

• The automated external defibrillator (AED) consists of two adhesive electrodes. It should be used only in case of cardiorespiratory arrest on adults and children over eight years of age. Before the age of eight, heart failure occurs only in exceptional cases caused by rhythm disturbances. A young heart is usually healthy and generally functions well except in cases of deformity. Only an automated external defibrillator equipped with specific electrodes may be used in this particular case by trained personnel.

• In order for an AED to work properly and effectively, it must be used as soon as possible following these steps:
– Place the victim on a hard, dry, and non-metallic surface.
– Remove any clothing from their chest and check that the skin is not humid or wet (otherwise, wipe any moisture away).
– Place the electrodes according to the illustration on the right.
– Keep your distance from any explosive environment (fuel and gas leakages, etc.)
– Let the machine analyze the victim’s heart rhythm. If it is a shockable rhythm, discharge the electrical shock.
– Avoid any physical contact with the victim while discharging the electrical shock(s).
– Never touch the victim during the automatic monitoring of the heart rhythm or while discharging the electrical shocks.

• The use of an automated external defibrillator should not stop you from calling 911 and from first applying cardiopulmonary resuscitation. Appropriate training is recommended so that a better and more efficient response can be provided on the spot.


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