General Questions Defibrillator

Why Do I Need An AED For My Organisation ?

The answer to this question is simple - To Save Lives

The primary purpose for having an AED is to save lives in the event that someone has a Sudden Cardiac Arrest. Defibrillation is the only clinically proven method for re-starting someones heart.

Why Is Time Important When Someone Has A Sudden Cardiac Arrest ?

Time is important when someone has a Sudden Cardiac Arrest as the survival rate drops by around 10% per minute to the point where after 10 minutes, the survival rate is less than 10%. As defibrillation is the only way to re-start the heart, access to one as quickly as possible is vitally important.

Do I Need To Start CPR When Someone Has A Sudden Cardiac Arrest ?

Yes. CPR is vital in keeping someone alive whilst you are waiting for a defibrillator or for medical / emergency assistance.

In the case of a Sudden Cardiac Arrest, CPR should be commenced immediately. A defibrillator can be connected to the patient whilst someone is conducting CPR. Ensure you are clear of the patient when it delivers a shock.

Can You Use A Defibrillator On A Person With A Pacemaker ?

Yes. However it is recommended that the defibrillator pad placement is not over the pacemaker.

When Do I Need To Use Paediatric Pads ?

Paediatric pads should be used on children up to the age of 8 years old or 25kgs. We would recommend not to delay therapy in determining weight or age.

Do You Have To Maintain Your Defibrillator ?

Yes. Apart from being good practise to ensure that your defibrillator is in working order all defibrillators need maintenance at some point.

Batteries and pads have expiry dates and need to be changed to ensure that they are in top working order. Our AED Authority Concierge program can help you to manage defibrillator maintenance and inspections.

Can Anyone Use A Defibrillator ?

Yes. Defibrillators are particularly easy to use. Most manufacturers supply defibrillators that have easy to use voice prompts that guide you through the use of the defibrillator.

As time is a critical factor in saving someones life in the event of a sudden cardiac arrest best practise is to commence CPR and connect a defibrillator as soon as possible even if the rescuer has no experience.

<span style="color: #0000ff;"><span style="color: #000000;">The Australian Resuscitation Council quote </span> - <a href=""> </a></span><span style="color: #0000ff;"><em>'<a href="">Any Attempt At Resuscitation Is Better Than No Attempt'</a></em></span>

Do You Need To Dry Patient If Sweaty Or Wet ?

Yes. It is important to ensure that the defibrillator pads have good contact with the skin. If they are placed on wet skin they won't stick and may not function correctly. If possible, dry the skin quickly with a towel or clothing.

What Is Best Practise Defibrillator Geographical Placement ?

When placing a defibrillator on a large site such as but not limited to a large school , business workplace etc it is important to consider that it won't be of benefit if it takes a long time to retrieve the defibrillator. In a best case scenario, we would recommend the defibrillator be no longer than 90 seconds away.

For example if the defibrillator is 6 minutes away from the patient then it could take 12 minutes to retrieve it and another 2 minutes to get it operational - a total of 14 minutes. Remember survival rates are less than 10% after 10 minutes.

In this case we would consider that you may need more than one defibrillator. Multiple defibrillators in a building, at a school or university are recommended or perhaps a portable defibrillator for some outdoor or geographically challenged work or activities.

Can I Hurt Someone If I Use A Defibrillator On Someone Who Is Not Having A Sudden Cardiac Arrest ?

No, When a defibrillator is attached to a patient it analyzes the heartbeat and determines if a shock is required. The defibrillator will not deliver a shock if it is not required. Connecting a defibrillator to a patient who has a suspected Sudden Cardiac Arrest or who has collapsed and lost a pulse, will not cause any harm and is in fact considered good practise.

More Questions and Answers

Is It True That You Have To Shave Someone Who Has Body Hair ?

Yes. It is important that the electrode pads have good contact with the skin so they can evaluate the heart rhythm and are able to deliver a shock effectively if required. Most defibrillators come with a shave kit allowing the rescuer to quickly dry shave the patient if required.

Does The Person Need To Have Their Clothing Removed From Their Chest ?

Yes. The only way to get pads onto the skin is to remove clothing; pads must be connected directly to the skin. Clothing such as T-Shirts , jumpers , bras and other undergarments need to be removed. Most defibrillators come with a preparation kit that contains scissors to enable the quick removal of clothing as required.