Normal Limits

"Chance is the very guide of life"

"In practical medicine the facts are far too few for them to enter into the calculus of probabilities... in applied medicine we are always concerned with the individual" -- S. D. Poisson

October 22, 2005

Instapundit talks about portable defibrillators an...

Instapundit talks about portable defibrillators an...: "Instapundit talks about portable defibrillators and a recent Popular Mechanics story: There's an article in the latest Popular Mechanics -- not on their website yet -- saying that the home defibrillators really do save lives. As they get cheaper and more ubiquitous, it's likely to make a real difference. A lot more people die from sudden cardiac death, where a defibrillator will save them but nothing else much will, than is generally realized. Likewise, inexpensive blood pressure monitors mean that -- since you don't have to go to a doctor -- more people will track their blood pressure. Just another way technology is empowering ordinary people.I wrote about this awhile back, looking at the data showing a minimal survival benefit. For some, that may be worth the $1,295: To put that in perspective, in a low-incidence practice (which would still have a higher incidence of sudden death than an average home), over 1900 AEDs (automatic defibrillators) would have to be purchased to treat 16 cardiac arrests over a 7 year period.Despite any form of advertising, the prognosis of sudden cardiac death is quite poor, whether a defibrillator is available publicly or not. A retrospective study suggested that targeted public placement of AEDs increased overall survival rate from a cardiac arrest from 5.0 to 6.3 percent.Certainly some may"

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