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Automated External Defibrillators

An automated external defibrillator (AED) is a portable device that checks the heart rhythm and when needed, it can also send electric shock to the heart to try to restore a normal rhythm. An AED is used to treat:

  • Sudden cardiac arrest (SCA).
  • People with irregular heartbeats. An electric shock from an AED can restore the heart's normal rhythm.

Automated external defibrillators (AEDs) are lightweight, battery-operated, portable devices with electrodes that can be attached to the chest of the person who is having sudden cardiac arrest (SCA). The electrodes send information about the person's heart rhythm to a computer in the AED and the computer analyzes the heart rhythm to find out if an electric shock is needed. If required, the AED uses voice prompts to tell you when to give the shock, and the electrode delivers it.