What Is A Defibrillator And How Is It Used In The Emergency Room?


Question: What is a defibrillator and how is it used in the emergency room?

Answer: A defibrillator is a device that delivers an electric shock to the heart. When the heart is having ventricular fibrillation -- that rapid heartbeat that does not produce blood going to the brain or other organs -- that has to be stopped immediately. And we know for many, many years that a shock delivered to the heart itself can stop the ventricular fibrillation. So that is then delivered -- and I'm sure most people have seen on ER or some other TV program -- delivered through the skin with electrodes on the chest, then to the heart.

And we have what's called an automated external defibrillator, the things that you see in airports for example, that will read the heart rhythm and instruct an individual as to whether a shock should be delivered or not. These are very accurate devices, very safe to use, and have saved many, many lives.

Next: What Is The Difference Between A Defibrillator Used In The Emergency Room And An Implanted Defibrillator?


Previous: How Does Nitroglycerin Work, When Is It Used, And Why Is It Placed Under The Tongue?
-- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 4223143. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 4223143.
Join the Discussion
You are using an outdated version of Internet Explorer. Please click here to upgrade your browser in order to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus
You Might Also Like...
See It, Share It
A Gilchrist county sheriffs car sits at the end of a trailer home where 7 members of a family were slain by their grandfather in Bell, FL, Thursday, Sept., 18, 2014. The grandfather, Don Spirit, pictured, also killed himself.
Phil Sandlin/AP Photo | Gilchrist County Sheriffs Office
St. Andre Bessette Catholic Church in Ecorse Michigan
PHOTO: Phoenix police officers escort Arizona Cardinals running back Jonathan Dwyer, to the 4th Avenue Jail following his arrest, Sept. 17, 2014 in Phoenix.
The Arizona Republic, David Kadlubowski/AP Photo