DEFIBRILLATORS SAVE LIVES IN THE AIR, ON THE GROUND.Byline: Denise Mann Medical Tribune News Service
Equipping airplanes with defibrillators can help save the lives of travelers who suffer cardiac arrest cardiac arrest
Abbr. CA A sudden cessation of cardiac function, resulting in loss of effective circulation.
A condition in which the heart stops functioning. , according to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.
2. In keeping with: according to instructions.
3. results of a five-year study involving passengers of Qantas Airlines.
Following the 1991 installation of defibrillators in 53 international planes and all terminals of the Australian airline, as well as the training of staff, six lives were saved - including two patients who suffered cardiac arrest in the air, researchers reported at the annual meeting of the American College of Cardiology The American College of Cardiology (ACC) is a nonprofit medical association established in 1949 to educate, research and influence health care public policy. The president for the 2006–2007 year is Steven E. Nissen.  The organization has 39 chapters in the U.S. .
Defibrillators were used on 27 people who suffered cardiac arrest while flying and 19 who suffered an arrest in an airport.
Usually caused by an electrical disturbance Noun 1. electrical disturbance - electrical signals produced by unwanted sources (atmospherics or receiver noise or unwanted transmitters)
electrical phenomenon - a physical phenomenon involving electricity in the heart known as ventricular fibrillation ventricular fibrillation
Uncoordinated contraction of the muscle fibres of the heart's ventricles (see arrhythmia). Causes include heart attack, electric shock, anoxia, abnormally high potassium or low calcium in the blood, and digitalis or epinephrine poisoning ( , cardiac arrest strikes more than 350,000 Americans each year, killing the majority. When the condition occurs, the heart's normal electrical rhythms become erratic and cause the heart to stop pumping blood.
Defibrillators work by applying an electric shock to the heart to help reestablish its normal rhythm. The devices must be used within six minutes of the onset of cardiac arrest.
While the number of people who suffer cardiac arrest while flying is low, ``death on an aircraft is almost always due to cardiac arrest caused by ventricular fibrillation,'' said lead researcher Dr. Michael F. O'Rourke, a cardiologist at St. Vincent's Hospital Hospital:
Qantas and Virgin Airways are currently the only airlines that have defibrillators on board, but others have plans to install them, according to O'Rourke.
``We are not going to save everybody,'' said Dr. Eric Donaldson, general manager of Qantas Aviation Health Services health services Managed care The benefits covered under a health contract . But flyers now ``have the opportunity of surviving,'' he added.
While there are no exact figures on how many people die while flying each year, estimates range from 200 to 1,000, O'Rourke said. At any one point in time, about 1 million people are flying, he noted.
Defibrillators cost about $3,000 each, according to O'Rourke.