Star Flight crews now have a new tool that should improve their ability to save lives. KLBJ's Perry Watson has details.
Additional information regarding the new defibrillators:
During the last calendar year, STAR Flight transported hundreds of patients with various critical medical problems. Of those patients, approximately 97 percent were placed on a cardiac monitor, and 35 percent were placed on a ventilator. Patients commonly require careful monitoring of their vital signs, including cardiac rhythm. Last year, 15 patients required defibrillation as a lifesaving measure during transport.
“During cardiac arrest, the heart stops beating, and with each minute that passes, the likelihood of survival decreases by 7 to 10 percent,” explained Postiglione. “When defibrillation occurs within the first few minutes of cardiac arrest, survival rates can approach 80 to 100 percent. The new monitors give us feedback and assistance that is lifesaving.”
The monitors assess the quality of CPR as the rescuer performs chest compressions, providing feedback to the rescuer on the speed and depth of compressions to ensure that the best possible CPR technique is performed.
The ZOLL X monitors are about half the size and weight of other full-featured monitor-defibrillators but are much more powerful with advanced capabilities. They are designed for professional rescuers to meet the specific demands and extreme conditions that flight paramedics and nurses face every day. With this upgraded technology, STAR Flight is better equipped to protect the lives of Central Texans who need emergency cardiac care.