Automated External Defibrillators and Children

An automatic external defibrillator is used to restart a heart that is pumping with an ineffective rhythm that does not adequately circulate blood. In most cases AEDs come equipped with defibrillator electrode pads made just for children, but not always.

To address a few concerns, the following is a recent statement to our first-responders on the use of Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) for children.

pediatric electrodes

Position Statement

Global Medical Services (GMS) supports the use of Automated External Defibrillators (AED) in the pediatric population.

The following recommendations are provided for First-Responder Services with AED programs and are consistent with the current Heart and Stroke Foundation guidelines:

  • AEDs equipped with pediatric dose attenuator and pads should be used on children (aged 1-8) and infants (less than 1 year) with no signs of life
  • Pads should be placed in the standard anterior-apex position or in the anterior-posterior position
  • Should pediatric dose attenuator and pads not be immediately available, adult pads may be used on both children and infants with no signs of life.

For more information on AEDs  and their use, please visit https://www.global-medical.ca/content/aeds.

Best Regards,
Dr. Allan Holmes
Medical Director, Global Medical Services

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One response to “Automated External Defibrillators and Children”

  1. aholmes61 says :

    Fortunately, sudden cardiac arrest in children is extremely rare. Some of causes in children include a direct blow to the chest (e.g. a baseball), children with underlying congenital heart disease, lightning strikes and a condition called viral cardiomyopathy (occurs as a very rare complication of a virus infection). Allan Holmes

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