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So you want to learn about defibrillators?

So you want to learn about defibrillators?

What is a defibrillator? 

A defibrillator is a medical instrument that is designed to send a calculated electric shock to normalize some irregular heart beats or a heart attack.

The two most common types of defibrillators are Automated External Defibrillators (AED) and a manual defibrillator. AED are located in nearly every area accessible by the public. They are intended to be easy enough to be used by folks with negligible training. You should not attempt using an AED if you have not had any training. Manual defibrillators are used by medical professionals in a clinical environment.


What are the most important features about AED Defibrillators?

For an AED to be beneficial to the community it needs to be simple to operate. The best designs automatically determine the status of the patient as well as what needs to be done to restore the heart's electrical structure. Many have voice prompts to lower the barrier to understanding what it is doing or what should next be done. They are light weight and able to be moved about easily. It is critical the AED have functions to self test and provide some kind of communication when maintenance, repairs, or replacement of consumables like electrodes or batteries. As one can imagine an AED could be very dangerous if not handled properly. As a result part of the required designs include safety mechanisms made to reduce the risk of harmful application.. 


How often do AED defibrillators need to be replaced?

Like any man made device they don't last forever. AEDs are typically in good working condition for a few years. You should read carefully about the AED you are interested in as the manufacturer will have suggestions on maintenance and replacement. 

The lifespan of an AED (Automated External Defibrillator) can vary depending on several factors, including the manufacturer's recommendations, the frequency of use, and the environmental conditions in which it is stored. The most common components that require attention are the battery and electrode pads. Batteries go bad over time so the AED needs to be tested and confirmed the battery is in good working order. The electrode pads have an adhesive that will degrade over time so they must be replaced approximately every 24 to 36 months. These are sophisticated electric devices that should be stored in temperature / humidity controlled environment and should be kept free of dust. Check your state and local requirements


What companies are best known for making AED defibrillators?

There are a few companies that have shown excellence in AED design, manufacture, and are made available nationally. The companies with the greatest market share include Phillips Healthcare, Zoll Medical Corporation, Physio Control (A Stryker company), Cardiac Science Corporation, Defibtech, and Heartsine.


Need more?

If you've got a question that's been left unanswered or would like a quote about the best defibrillator for your use give us a call at 231-715-5705 or send us an email at 

If you've like to preview some of the AED and accessories we'd recommend please visit Fire Gear Outfitters AED Collection

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