Defibrillators are electronic devices that provide a shock or rhythm to the heart in order to restore regular heartbeat. They are used to prevent or treat arrhythmias, which are irregular heartbeats that are either too rapid or too slow. If the heart abruptly stops beating, defibrillators can help restart it. Defibrillators are available in a range of forms and sizes, each with its own manner of action.
AEDs, which are increasingly widely available in public places, are utilized to save the lives of individuals who have had cardiac arrest. In an emergency, even inexperienced onlookers may use these devices. Other defibrillators can help people who are dying as a consequence of a life-threatening arrhythmia.
Defibrillators are classified into two types: implantable cardioverter defibrillators (ICDs) that are surgically implanted within the body and wearable cardioverter defibrillators (WCDs) that are worn on the body. Adjusting to life with a defibrillator may take some time and effort, and it is vital to be aware of the potential repercussions. Defibrillators are classified into three types: namely, AEDs, ICDs, and WCDs. An AED, short for an automated external defibrillator, is a battery-powered, portable device that checks the heart’s rhythm and administers a shock to the heart to resume a normal rhythm.
The device is meant to help people who are having a cardiac arrest. Sticky pads with sensors, called electrodes, are placed on the chest of a person suffering from cardiac arrest. The electrodes provide information about the person’s heart rhythm to the defibrillator’s computer. To assess if an electric shock is necessary, the computer analyses the cardiac rhythm.
ICDs are surgically inserted in the chest or stomach, where arrhythmias may be detected. Arrhythmias can stop or interrupt the blood flow from your heart to the other parts of your body. The ICD shocks the patient to restore normal heart rhythm. An ICD may provide a low-energy shock to either accelerate or slow an abnormal heart rate, as well as a high-energy shock to correct a fast or irregular heartbeat. If low-energy shocks fail to restore your normal heart rhythm, the device may defibrillate you with high-energy shocks. ICDs are similar to pacemakers, with the exception that pacemakers only provide low-energy electrical shocks.
ICDs have a generator connected to cables that monitor your pulse rate and deliver a shock if necessary. Some ICDs include wires that go through one or two of the heart’s chambers. Other defibrillators, rather than running wires into the chambers of the heart, rest on the heart to monitor its pulse. The ICD may also record the heart’s electrical activities and cardiac rhythms. The recordings can help your doctor fine-tune the device’s software so that it works better to mend irregular heartbeats. The device is programmed to respond to the type of arrhythmia you are likely to develop.
Your provider creates the device just for you. It is programmed to recognize a certain heart rhythm. When an arrhythmia develops, the receptors sense it and alert the user. If a shock is not necessary, the alert can be turned off. If you do not respond, the device will shock your heart to restore the rhythm. Normally, this takes less than a minute. The device may deliver repeated shocks during an occurrence. The sensors must be changed after each episode. The device may also keep track of your heart’s activity and send information to your doctor.