Before defibrillators brought us into the technological age of medical techniques, CPR was (and still can be) the most effective technique for restarting the heart. Nowadays it still has a place where an electrical socket just isn’t available. That means, practically everywhere outdoors, especially in natural(ish) environments. When firefighters need to rescue hostages from fiery situations, they may need to use CPR in case of asphyxiation risks. Lifeguards at beaches often have to rescue hapless victims from dangerous waters. There’s a high chance of someone drowning so CPR is used not only to restart the heart but also an attempt to dislodge and release any water the person may have swallowed. CPR is a tried and tested technique that’s available 24/7. However, defibrillatorsstill have a place, especially in hospitals where excessive force to the chest could actually kill a patient instead.
The proper and safe use of a defibrillator requires some research and monitored practice. You can’t just press it to someone’s chest and expect them to come out unscathed. There is a step by step process needed to get the best results possible.
1. Defibrillators can only work on bare skin. Remove clothing as much as possible in order to obtain proper access.
2. The affected area cannot have any moisture. It must remain as dry as possible or the moisture could tamper with the machinery.
3. The defibrillator does not start working as soon as you plug it in. Much like a car engine or lawnmowers Whangarei, you need to give it time to warm up.
4. You can’t just place the paddles wherever you please. There is a designated spot on the chest area that it must be applied to. Make note of it.
5. Finally, apply the paddles and push. Don’t just tap the area, actually apply pressure. The patient needs to feel it working
The defibrillator has a rather interesting history behind it for such an important machine. Did you know that it was born from a concept developed in the late 18th century? Thanks to Peter Christian Abigaard from Denmark, people learned that hearts could be stopped and then restarted with the aid of electricity. Along the timeline, the technique was tested on animals with moderate success. When it was discovered almost at the turn of the 20th century that the technique could restart dog hearts, it was time for the next step. It took almost three decades for someone to start actually developing defibrillators. Only after their safe creation could they then be used on humans. And the rest can almost speak for itself.