Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) are the latest, most important, advancement in sudden cardiac arrest response. They are amazing little gadgets that pretty much anyone can operate with little aed training and they are popping up all over the place, from schools to churches to health clubs to homes.
Ventricular Fibrillation (VF) is an electrical abnormality where the heart stops pumping because the electrical impulses in the heart are out of synch, causing it to quiver instead of beat. I like the analogy of this being like an hysterical person who is screaming and crying and beyond reason – a rude slap in the face shocks them into gaining composure. If VF is treated quickly, the heart can get back to work just fine – if not treated, VF degrades to something called ‘asystole’ which is generally fatal.