What is Sudden Cardiac Arrest?
Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) is the abrupt loss of heart function in a person who may or may not have heart disease. SCA can occur from a number of different medical, injury, environmental emergencies. SCA is one of the leading causes of death in the United States, striking more than 340,000 victims each year, and hundreds of thousands more worldwide. More people die from SCA than from breast cancer, prostate cancer, house fires, hand guns, traffic accidents and AIDs combined.
What is the current SCA survival rate?
The current U.S. survival rate is less than 5%. The liklihood of successful resuscitation decreases by about 10% with every minute that passes without defibrillation. An additional 40,000 lives could be saved each year in the U.S. alone with widespread access to defibrillators.
What is an AED?
AED stands for Automated External Defibrillator. An AED is a device that reads the victims heart rhythm and determines if is in need of a shock. The AED will deliever a shock to the heart if needed to restore the heart to its normal rhythm.
Are AED's safe?
AED's are very accurate and will not shock the victim unless they are in SCA. WHen the AED is used properly and with approriate precautions, AED's are very simple to operate and pose no risk to either the rescuer or the victim.
Can anyone use an AED?
Whether you are trained or not, anyone can use an AED in the case of an emergency. It is always highly recommended that you recieve a certification in a CPR/AED course. Refer to www.nscl.org/programs/health/aed.html to learn about your states requirements.