Whilst teaching first aid courses throughout the Midlands recently, we have come across a useful tip when considering the use of the AED that many first aiders and some first aid trainers were not aware of. A defibrillator is an invaluable tool in first aid, and the piece of equipment that it ultimately going to initially save a cardiac arrest casualties life. More and more public places and workplaces in the West Midlands, UK and worldwide are investing in this fantastic technology and more defibrillators are readily available for first aiders to use. I passionately teach the correct use of an AED on the majority of our First Aid courses. However are we as first aiders using the defibrillator to it’s full potential?
Throughout my many years flying the defibrillator was often used on many of my flights, heart attacks at 33,000 feet are more common than you may think. However out of the many time I have connected one to a casualty it has often been to initially monitor the casualties heart in a suspected heart attack. Did you know that a AED can be used to monitor the heart as well as shock it? If you get to a conscious casualty complaining of pain down one of their arms, chest pains, extreme sweating and ashen/grey in colour consider connecting the defibrillator to them. This action could save valuable time if the condition worsens, and the suspected heart attack goes into cardiac arrest, promoting the chain of survival and enhancing your casualties chance of recovery:
Chain of survival
Early recognition and Early CPR Early defibrillation Post resuscitation care
call for help
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