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The design of an automated external defibrillator - Essay Example

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The design of an automated external defibrillator

As such, this paper seeks to highlight the defibrillator in relation to the history, functional components and human engineering considerations. Defibrillators United Kingdom is faced with health crisis with the high incidences of heart attacks among its citizens. These indices are reportedly some of the highest in the world with cardiovascular diseases causing more deaths annually than any other disease or condition. It is estimated that of the 150,000 people who have heart attacks annually, 94,000 of them die owing to various variables (Handler and Coghlan 2008). Research indicates that over one million people over the age of 35 in the United Kingdom have suffered a heart attack, and a third of these victim die before getting to the hospital. The scale of the burden is felt in the economy with escalating costs of health care as indicated by the billions spent annually by the UK government on cardiovascular diseases (Handler and Coghlan 2008). The relatively high incidences of heart attacks in UK are of great concern to health care professionals and other stakeholders, which have seen them, consolidate their efforts in order to reduce the effects. Stakeholders such as medical engineers and manufacturers team up with healthcare professionals in an effort to brainstorm on the possible solutions in line with technological advances. This front has seen the successful adoption and incorporation of technology in healthcare facilities in form of medical devices. According to the European Union definition, a medical device is an apparatus or instrument that is designed for preventative, diagnostic, monitoring, or therapeutic purposes and its purpose is not achieved through pharmacological, immunological or metabolic means (Krutmann 2011). Similarly, the mode of action of medical devices is not through chemical action in a patient’s body, although may be assisted in its functions through such means. As such, it is essential that medical devices exceed the threshold under the European Union regulations, which call for detailed records of the products, designing and construction is limited to qualified personnel, and comprehensive risk assessment should be done (Jacobson and Murray 2007). The key function of a medical device can be illustrated from scientific information quoted by the manufacturer in line with functional principle and the manufacturer’s labelling. Medical devices vary in their capacity and level of sophistication ranging from tongue depressors to haemodialysis equipment. Owing to the role played by medical devices in the provision of healthcare services, it is critical that appropriate guidelines and regulations are adhered to (Kramer, Xu and Kesselheim, 2012). It is for this reason that biomedical engineering steps in to fill embark on the key aspects of medical devices that involve initial designing, system analysis and practical application to ensure quality and efficient products. Among the medical devices are defibrillators, which play a crucial role in the relieving heart attacks in areas away from medical facilities. This paper seeks to highlight defibrillators as a medical device while focussing on their history, scope of application and safety aspects of the device with regard to human factors engineering. Fibrillation is characterised by accelerated and irregular contraction of heart muscle fibres, which is attributed to a deranged electrical activity of the heart. Fibrillation ...Show more


Abstract The incidences of myocardial infarctions maintain at all-time high in the United Kingdom generating a healthcare and economic concern. The availability of medical devices facilitates prompt response to medical emergencies with regard to cardiovascular conditions…
Author : marksbernard
The design of an automated external defibrillator essay example
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