What is an AED device? AED stands for Automatic External Defibrillator, a device that can help save a life of a heart attack victim. When you are curious about using a portable AED in your home, or your place of business, and you are asking “How To Use An AED?“, it is important to note as a disclaimer here that you need to seek professional help first – take the automatic defibrillator training, or talk to a medical doctor first about your specific home AED defibrillator installation.
In this quick article, we will go over the basic “chain of survival” sequence that will help you use an AED in an emergency, for example when you see someone who requires help. We will go over four links in the chain: Quickly diagnose a heart condition emergency and notify EMS, the emergency medical service, CPR, AED shock, Advanced life support.
Quickly and timely realize the emergency and call 911
The first link in the “chain of survival” is to notify EMS by calling 911. This is the absolutely necessary first step in an emergency situation. For example, you see a person collapse and you suspect a heart attack. It is especially crucial that YOU act in the situation when many bystanders are present. I have personally been in situation when an accident happened, and many people rushed to see the injured, and seemed very concerned and wanted to help, but no one took an initiative to bring first aid although most people had it in their cars.
You need to realize that, even when many onlookers are present, it will likely have to be YOU who will call 911, since everyone else will think that “someone else already called”.
Immediately provide CPR to the victim
CPR, or cardio pulmonary resuscitation, is important for a person with a heart situation for two reasons. First, it provides blood flow into the brain. Second, CPR increases the chance that the subsequent shock with the AED machine will be successful. The reason for this is that CPR may bring the heart from the state of “flat line” or, no pulsation whatsoever, into the state of fibrillation, or quivering. The next step, desfibrilador use, is only successful when the heart is fibrillating or quickly pulsating.
Quickly provide an AED defibrillator shock
Using a cardiac defibrillator, or heart defibrillator after CPR has shown to double the survival probability in heart attack victims compared to using CPR only. Even if you have never taken an AED course, it is really easy to use AED. Most AEDs need to be turned on, and will provide audio, and textual instructions on their use, so you just have to follow them precisely and quickly. There is no danger in using AED since AED because of the built-in protection mechanism. The defibrillator shock will only be administered after an AED diagnoses that the victim’s heart is in a state where AED can help, that is, AED shock will not be administered when the heart is operating normally, or not at all. The quick action is of essence here; the likelihood of survival decreases by 10% every minute you delay the use of CPR and AED.
Quick advanced life support
There is nothing much you can do here. The EMS team will need to take over from here and offer the advanced life support. This is why it is important that you have called 911 before starting with any rescue procedures on your own.