When an emergency occurs, after following these common first aid steps. These are 8 steps you should follow when using an Automated External Defibrillator, according to what the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute suggests:

1. Check the victim’s pulse and breathing

  • If they are absent or irregular, get ready to use the AED

2. Check for puddles of water near the victim

  • Move him or her to a dry area and stay away from wetness when delivering shocks

3. Turn on the AED’s power

4. Expose the person’s chest

  • If the person’s chest is wet, dry it.  If the victim has a very hairy chest, you may have to shave it. The AED usually goes with a kit of scissors and/or razors that will allow you to expose the chest properly.

5. Remove metal necklaces and underwire bras. Also check for body piercings

  • The metal may conduct electricity and cause burns. Check the person for implanted medical devices, such as a pacemaker or implantable cardioverter defibrillator, that can be visible under the chest or abdomen skin.

6. Apply the pads to the person’s chest and make sure they have good adhesion to the skin

  • If they don’t, the machine may repeat the phrase “check electrodes”. One should be put on the right center of the person’s chest above the nipple. The other pad should go slightly below the other nipple and to the left of the ribcage. Move the defibrillator pads at least 1 inch away from possible implanted devices or piercings so the electric current can flow freely between the pads.

7. Press the “analyse” button

  • Do not touch the victim while the AED is checking his heart. If a shock is needed, the AED will let you know when to deliver it (or, if it’s a fully automatic model, it will warn you to stand clear and automatically defibrillate).

6. Stand clear of the person and make sure others are clear, then push the “shock” button

  • Start or resume CPR until emergency medical help arrives or until the person begins to move



How to use an AED

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