Document Detail

AED use in a passenger during a long-haul flight: repeated defibrillation with a successful outcome.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  19378914     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
INTRODUCTION: Sudden cardiac arrest is one of the leading causes of death, and early defibrillation of ventricular fibrillation (VF) is the single most important intervention for improving survival. The automated external defibrillator (AED) and the concept of public access defibrillation provide a solution to shorten defibrillation delays. Commercial aircraft create a unique environment for the use of the AED since an emergency medical service system (EMS) response is not available. We review published studies on this subject and describe the case of a passenger who developed VF during an intercontinental flight and was successfully resuscitated despite recurrent episodes of VF. CASE REPORT: A 60-yr-old man developed VF during a flight from Tokyo to Helsinki. VF frequently recurred and shocks were delivered 21 times altogether. The aircraft was diverted to the city of Kuopio. When the local EMS crew encountered the patient 3 h after the onset of the cardiac arrest, the rhythm again converted to VF and three further shocks were delivered. The patient recovered, and 3 wk later he was transported to his home country, fully alert. DISCUSSION: There are three large studies reporting placing AEDs on commercial aircraft. No harm for co-passengers or malfunctions were reported. Survival rates have been higher than those obtained by well-performing EMS. According to previous studies, placing AEDs on commercial aircraft is also cost effective. The absence of a suitable diversion destination should not influence the rescuers' decision to attempt CPR on board.
Heini Harve; Olavi Hämäläinen; Jouni Kurola; Tom Silfvast
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Case Reports; Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Aviation, space, and environmental medicine     Volume:  80     ISSN:  0095-6562     ISO Abbreviation:  Aviat Space Environ Med     Publication Date:  2009 Apr 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2009-04-21     Completed Date:  2009-06-02     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  7501714     Medline TA:  Aviat Space Environ Med     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  405-8     Citation Subset:  IM; S    
Hyvinkää Hospital, Department of Anesthesia and Intensive Care, Hyvinkää, Finland.
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MeSH Terms
Aerospace Medicine*
Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation
Electric Countershock*
Heart Arrest / therapy*
Middle Aged
Ventricular Fibrillation / therapy

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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