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AEDs: High-Tech Help for Cardiac Arrest

Wednesday, Jan 27, 2016

You've probably seen an AED in your gym, at a school or some other type of public building. An AED can help save the life of an individual in sudden cardiac arrest.

What is Sudden Cardiac Arrest?

During sudden cardiac arrest the heart suddenly and unexpectedly stops beating. Blood stops flowing to the brain and other vital organs. It is a serious medical emergency. Every second and minute counts during cardiac arrest. If someone is having sudden cardiac arrest, they may suddenly collapse and lose consciousness.

Call 9-1-1 immediately if you think someone might be experiencing sudden cardiac arrest.

Sudden cardiac arrest usually results in death if it's not treated within minutes. In fact, each minute of sudden cardiac arrest leads to a 10 percent reduction in survival. Using an AED on a person who is having SCA may save the person's life.

What is an AED?

AED stands for automated external defibrillator. It is a portable, battery-operated device that checks a person's heart rhythm and can provide an electric shock to the heart to try and restore a normal rhythm. The shock is delivered through the chest to the heart. An AED has a built-in computer that checks a person's heart rhythm through adhesive electrodes. The computer determines if the shock is needed.

If there are no individuals on scene trained to use an AED, untrained people may use the device by following simple instructions and prompts provided by the AED unit. Remember, always call 9-1-1 in the case of suspected cardiac arrest.

How is Doylestown Health reaching into the community?

As part of its commitment to keeping the community safe and healthy, Doylestown Health, through its Health Connections outreach program in the Cowhey Family ShopRite in Warminster, donated three automated external defibrillators (AEDs) to Warminster Township. The devices will be available for use in locations frequented by members of the public and municipal employees: Warminster Township Administration Building, Five Ponds Golf Course and Ben Wilson Senior Center. In addition to the AED machines, Doylestown Health is also providing free training to Warminster municipal employees in the use of the machines.

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