Should AEDs Be Used in Infants?

Published on in CHOP News

Should AEDs Be Used in InfantsWhile automated external defibrillators (AEDs) have improved survival rates for out-of-hospital cardiac arrests in many patient subgroups, little is known about the safety and efficacy of AEDs in infants. Joseph Rossano, MD, and colleagues searched the scientific literature for relevant studies of the use of external defibrillation in infants with pediatric arrhythmias.

The data from clinical studies on AED use in infants are limited, with no randomized clinical trials. However, research supports the accuracy of AEDs in recognizing pediatric arrhythmias, and two case reports demonstrated the successful use of AEDs in infants. Dosage studies suggest that further research is needed to determine the most effective defibrillation doses in children. Because the available evidence suggests that AEDs are safe and effective in infants, and because survival is unlikely in the absence of prompt defibrillation, the authors recommend the use of AEDs in infants with suspected cardiac arrest. 

Joseph Rossano et al. What is the Evidence for the Use of Automated External Defibrillators in Infants?.

Contact: Joey McCool Ryan, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, 267-426-6070 or