Sudden cardiac arrest kills more than 325,000 people every year. If someone collapsed in front of you, would you know what to do?
Automatic external defibrillators – or AEDs – are becoming commonplace in many offices and large public spaces like shopping malls, amusement parks and airports as well as in schools. They have proven time and again that they can save lives – but they can’t do it alone.
AEDs are usually located in high traffic areas like outside break rooms or near restrooms. They are often mounted on a wall, similar to a fire extinguisher. AEDs are also extremely easy to use, because once you open the box, the machine starts telling you what to do. You simply follow the instructions to stick the pads on the person’s bare chest and step away – the machine will decide whether or not the heart needs to be shocked.
According to the American Red Cross, these are the basic steps in using an AED to save a life:
- Call out to the person to determine if they are responsive. If they are unresponsive, check to see if they are breathing or have a pulse. If the person is not breathing, start CPR.
- If the person does not have a pulse, turn on the AED and follow the audio commands.
- Open the victim’s shirt and wipe the chest dry if necessary.
- Attach one pad to the upper right chest of the victim and one to the lower left side.
- Plug the pad wires into the AED machine if not already attached.
- Be sure there is no one touching the victim. Push the “Analyze” button and wait for the analysis to be completed.
- If the analysis indicates a shock is needed, be sure everyone stands back and then press the “Shock” button on the AED.
- Allow the AED to reanalyze the victim and follow the audio commands.
If the AED analysis determines no shock is needed, check for a pulse. If you still cannot locate a pulse and the victim is not breathing, perform CPR until the AED reanalyzes or help arrives.
If you or someone you love has been injured as a result of an accident, our Texas personal injury attorneys have the experience and resources to help you through this difficult time and obtain just compensation for your injuries. Please call 800-248-6000 or contact us for a free consultation.