Drones with Defibrillators to Help Lower Heart Disease Response Time

Cardiac arrest is a massive risk across the globe. Nearly 6 mn people across the globe die of the condition every year and in most cases, which happen at the patient’s home or other nonmedical settings, people don’t make it. A recent study undertaken in Sweden, with the aim of reducing the emergency response time in case of a cardiac arrest, incorporated drones. The drones in the study were used to carry heart defibrillators at the scene of cardiac arrest to quickly provide bystanders a way of reviving the patient until proper medical supervision can be arranged.

Significant Reduction in Response Times as Compared to Ambulance

The study found out that drones reached at the site of 18 cardiac arrests within 5 minutes of launch. This time was nearly 17 minutes faster than the time taken by ambulances to reach the specified destination. The time saved is a big deal for responding to a condition like cardiac arrest where delay of few minutes can lead to the patient’s death.

Places Lacking Emergency Medical Resources could Massively Benefit
The lead author of the study, Andreas Claesson, a Center for Resuscitation Science, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm researcher, noted that the emergency response time in towns near Stockholm, Sweden, where the study was undertaken, was almost 30 minutes. The lack of enough emergency medical resources to provide for summer vacationers made the situation difficult and the rate of survival was zero.

Small, Light-weight Defibrillators Put to Use

The drones that were employed in the study used heart defibrillators weighing less than two pounds. The drones also featured an electronic voice that gave instructions regarding the usage of the device in the emergency situation. The study took place in October 2016 and was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association on Tuesday. The lead author of the study plans to undertake a follow-up research to test the use of drone-delivered defibrillators for use in real0life cardiac arrests.