What Heart Conditions Require A Defibrillator?

A red and orange 3D model heart diagram

A defibrillator is a small device — that delivers an electrical shock to the heart to stop arrhythmias (irregular heartbeats). That shock restores the normal rhythm that sends a fresh supply of oxygen-rich blood to your brain, heart and other organs. So, what heart conditions require a defibrillator? Some conditions are more common than others and have been listed below:

  1. Ventricular fibrillation;

  2. Atrial flutter;

  3. Ventricular tachycardia;

  4. Supraventricular tachycardia;

  5. Atrial fibrillation;

  6. Sick sinus syndrome; and

  7. A conduction block.

Ventricular fibrillation is one of the most serious types of abnormal heart rhythm and is often fatal when untreated. It's caused by a disruption in the heart's electrical system, which leads to irregular heartbeats. Abnormal heart rhythms may present as:

  1. A fluttering in your chest;

  2. A slow heartbeat; 

  3. A racing heartbeat;

  4. A feeling of being lightheaded/dizzy;

  5. Shortness of breath;

  6. Chest pains; or

  7. Fainting.

If you've had a heart attack or if you've suffered ventricular fibrillation  — you may be at risk for sudden cardiac arrest. Sudden cardiac arrest comes on quickly, and it happens without warning. Therefore, virtually anyone who has had a heart condition should have a defibrillator on hand and know how to operate it in case of an emergency.

What Are The Symptoms Of A Weak Heart?

Heart failure describes the condition that occurs when your heart is unable to supply the body with enough blood, oxygen and nutrients to maintain homeostasis. It is a serious condition, and can be caused by many different factors. Heart failure is defined as the inability of the left ventricle of the heart to fill with blood upon contraction. When this occurs, cardiac output is lowered, resulting in various symptoms. 

Heart failure may develop slowly or quickly following a decrease in blood supply or hypertension (high blood pressure). Although most people associate heart failure with an older age group it can affect people at any stage of life, regardless of gender or race.

When it comes to your heart, there are many things that can happen. Some conditions result in weakness of the heart; when the heart is weak, it is unable to pump enough blood throughout the body. Symptoms of a weak heart can include:

  1. Difficulty breathing;

  2. Fatigue;

  3. Edema (swelling in the legs, ankles and feet);

  4. Inability to exercise;

  5. Feeling nauseated;

  6. Unexplained weight gain;

  7. Rapid and/or irregular heartbeat;

  8. A heavy sensation in the chest;

  9. A loss of appetite; and

  10. Swelling of the abdomen.

There are also a number of conditions that can cause the heart to weaken, including diabetes, coronary heart disease, high blood pressure, genetics, smoking, drug abuse, sleep apnea, blocked arteries and more. 

Why Is A Defibrillator Needed?

A defibrillator is a medical device that helps to restore the normal rhythm of an arrhythmic heart effectively. So, a person suffering from any such condition can be saved by it. While the device cannot help in every case, it is one of the most effective treatments for those with heart abnormalities. 

When used in emergency situations, defibrillators are proven to be effective. They can save lives. If you or someone you know suffer from any of the heart conditions that require a defibrillator, it might be beneficial to purchase a portable defibrillator from a reputable company such as AED Advantage

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