AED
Automatic Electronic Defibrillators save lives in many places, but not in hospitals. Image: Flickr / acme / CC-BY

Around 2000, the American Heart Association recommended that automated electronic defibrillators be used in hospitals. The belief was that these AEDs would save lives by reducing human error, but a long-term study has found the opposite is true in hospitals.

Study of hospital AEDs

Published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, a study of 11,695 patients in hospitals found that AEDs do not necessarily save more lives in hospitals. In the official language of the study:

Within the entire study population, AED use was associated with a lower rate of survival after in-hospital cardiac arrest compared with no AED use (16.3% vs 19.3%; adjusted rate ratio [RR], 0.85; 95% confidence interval [CI]

Or, in translation, about 3 percent more people survived without AED use than those who did get AED shocks. In real terms, this means that 965 individuals who had a heart attack may have been alive if this recommendation had not been followed.

The AHA recommendation

Ten years ago, it was on the recommendation of a subcommittee of the American Heart Association that many hospitals started replacing traditional defibrillators with AEDs. The recommendation was made because the AHA was concerned about the amount of time it took for most patients with cardiac arrest to receive treatment with traditional defibrillators. The recommendation was based mostly upon research studying the effectiveness of AED devices in non-medical settings, such as airplanes, schools and restaurants. The AHA admitted, in the initial recommendation, that the effectiveness of AEDs had not been studied in hospitals.

When and where AEDs should be used

Automated electronic defibrillators do not improve survival rates in hospitals. AEDs, however, do improve heart attack survival rates when they are made available in public spaces and with first responders. In short, automated electronic defibrillators are useful and effective in saving lives, but they are not necessarily the best option in hospital cardiac wards, where staff and nurses are trained in emergency cardiac care.

Sources

Fair Warning: http://www.fairwarning.org/2011/11/bad-shock-automated-devices-for-failing-hearts-may-save-fewer-lives-in-hospitals/
Journal of the American Medical Association: http://jama.ama-assn.org/content/304/19/2129
University of Iowa (PDF): http://medicina.udea.edu.co/programas/Curriculo_Nuevo/9urgen/Urgencias/NOVENO%20SEMESTRE/BIBLIOTECA%20TEMATICA/CLINICA/REANIMACION%202/RCP,%20desfibrilaci%F3n.pdf

Post By bryanh (1,420 Posts)

Connect

Do you have a fantastic idea related to this article, but just don't have the money you need to start your own company or side-business? Get the loans you need from https://personalmoneynetwork.com to help get your new company underway, from the small loan professionals at PersonalMoneyNetwork.

PG&E to pay $70 million for pipeline tragedy

PG&E to pay $70 million for pipeline tragedy

Pacific Gas and Electric Co., a northern California utility, has agreed to pay $70 million to the California town of San Bruno for a pipeline explosion that killed eight people in 2010. Company says it’s remorseful The San Francisco-based power company’s president, Chris Johns, released a statement Monday, saying PG&E is sorry and eager to […]

Judge stabbed and deputy shot in Washington courthouse

Grays Harbor County Courthouse

Following a standoff in a Washington state county courtroom Friday, a man reportedly escaped after shooting a sheriff’s deputy in the shoulder and stabbing a judge in the neck. The man is still at large. Treachery among the tree farms The incident occurred Friday afternoon in the western Washington town of Montesano, which bills itself […]

Microraptor was one flashy little dinosaur

Microraptor fossil

A team of Chinese and American scientists have found that Microraptor, a small four winged dinosaur that went extinct about 130 million years ago, was likely black and almost certainly had glossy, iridescent feathers. Until now, the coloring of extinct creatures was a matter of pure speculation. That may no longer be the case. The […]

Autocorrected message leads to school lockdown

Homage to the Sun

Adjacent schools in Georgia were locked down for two hours Wednesday after a text message reportedly warned of a “gunman” on campus. Later, it was learned that the message was the result of a smartphone autocorrect function, attempting to “fix” the misspelled slang word “gunna.” A series of mixups A series of mixups led to […]