Automated external defibrillation by untrained deaf lay rescuers

Claudio Sandroni, Massimo Antonelli, Peter Fenici, Fabio Cavallaro, Maria Luisa Franchi, Claudio Menchinelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Introduction: The use of automated external defibrillators (AEDs) by lay rescuers can reduce the time to defibrillation, improving survival after out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. However, some people have hearing defects that can prevent them from understanding the AED verbal prompts. Moreover, even rescuers with normal hearing function may not easily understand the AED verbal prompts when operating in a noisy environment. This study was designed to assess the capability of rescuers to defibrillate effectively using an AED which included visual prompts. Methods and results: Nine deaf employees with no previous experience in basic life support (BLS) or defibrillation were asked to defibrillate a manikin following the text prompts of a Heartstart FR2+ AED. Subjects were tested before and after a 6 h BLS¿AED course carried out with the help of a sign language interpreter. Before training, seven out of nine deaf subjects (78%) were able to defibrillate, eight out of nine subjects (89%) placed the pads correctly, and the mean time to defibrillation was s. After the course, all subjects were able to complete the defibrillation sequence and place the pads correctly. The mean post-course time to defibrillation was s ( ). None of the nine subjects touched the manikin during charging of the defibrillator and shock delivery before or after the course. Conclusions: This study demonstrates that untrained deaf rescuers can use AEDs appropriately providing that the defibrillator has visual instructions. Training improves defibrillator use and reduces time to defibrillation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43-48
Number of pages6
JournalResuscitation
Publication statusPublished - 2004

Keywords

  • Automated external defibrillator (AED)
  • Cardiopulmonary resuscitation
  • Defibrillation and Training
  • Hearing impaired

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