Claude Beck – The Defibrillator Creator



Claude Schaeffer Beck, born in 1894, was an American cardiac surgeon who is famous for designing and innovating various cardiac surgery techniques which includes the development of the very first defibrillator unit.

People have always suffered from heart problems but usually died from other causes like infections and diseases prior to stage where heart related problems occur. However as medicine advanced and people lived longer, heart disease and related issues became more apparent.

Beck was one of the first surgeons who excelled in heart surgery, especially with operations which involved damaged heart muscles and improving circulation. In the 1930’s he perfected operations which improved heart circulation on patients but noticed that the heart sometimes went into ventricular fibrillation (VF).

Beck tried to massage the heart with his hand but this did not always work and in 1947 he successful revived a 14 year old boy with the world’s first defibrillator unit which used spoons as electrode pads.

Initially, testing was conducted on animals whereby after massaging the heart and running a brief electric current through the muscle, the process could restore the heart back to its normal rhythm after being in VF. He concluded the procedure would have the same effect on humans.

In the 1950’s, Beck and his colleagues began developing cardiopulmonary resuscitation techniques and in less than twenty years, they had trained over 3,000 doctors and nurses in how to perform their CPR techniques. In 1963 they added a course in ‘closed chest’ CPR for the public and first responders.

defibshop Chief Executive David Howarth said:  “His research and developments into cardiac arrest therapy and CPR paved the way for what we have today.

‘From the moment he saved that 14 year old boy to now, we have developed effective life saving defibrillators which are used to help people who have suffered a sudden cardiac arrest.

For more information on the defibrillator units we sell today thanks to the inventions and research conducted by Claude Beck, you can check out our defibrillator stock or you could contact our friendly defibshop team on 0800 470 4847. We’ll be happy to walk you through our range to find right unit for you and your budget.

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