Eli5: I understand that CPR is given to a person that has no pulse then what is a defibrillator used for.


Often times in TV shows and movies defibrillator is used when someone has a slow or no pulse but isn’t that wrong? Could some explain what the purpose of defibrillator is used for? And do shows and movie even do research before shooting the scene?

In: 5

To give the heart the right impulse and boost to manage to beat properly on its own. With absolutely NO pulse a defibrillator won’t work.

Defibrillators are devices that restore a normal heartbeat by sending an electric pulse or shock to the heart. They are used to prevent or correct an arrhythmia, a heartbeat that is uneven or that is too slow or too fast.

Different tools for different purposes. CPR keeps the brain oxygenated when breathing has stopped. Defibrillation starts or normalizes a stopped or irregular heartbeat.

CPR manually oxygenates the blood and pushes it through the body so that we can try to stop brain death for as long as we can. Essentially you are mimiking a heart beat through chest thrusts. But the heart is still not beating right, just beating on the chest won’t fix that. Thats where the defibrillator comes in – it shocks the heart in a way that makes it spontaneously beat again.

In order to pump blood,the heart has to contract with a specific rhythm and pattern. Sometimes the rhythm gets messed up. A defibrillator stops the messed up pattern and resets the heart, so that the body’s natural pacemaker can reestablish the right rhythm.