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Prehospital automated external defibrillators in Japan
The availability of public automated external defibrillators in Japan has increased dramatically within the past 5 years. A prospective observational study published in the New England Journal of Medicine (2010;362:994–1004) examined the impact of these devices on 1-month survival and neurological outcome following out-of-hospital cardiac arrest. Early defibrillation, regardless of the provider, was associated with good neurological outcome after ventricular fibrillation arrest. The study reported that as the number of automated external defibrillators increased, the mean time to shock decreased and survival with minimum neurological impairment increased.
Viewing the body after trauma
The decision of bereaved relatives on whether or not to view the body following sudden and traumatic death varies greatly between individuals. It is influenced by many factors. This decision is more difficult in cases in which the bodies are disfigured by the manner of death, a group that healthcare professionals are often reluctant to let relatives view. Reasons to see the body range from needing confirmation of death, to needing to make sure the deceased …