A shocking past: A walk through generations of defibrillation development

Sarah R. Gutbrod, Igor R. Efimov*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Defibrillation is one of the most successful and widely recognized applications of electrotherapy. Yet the historical road to its first successful application in a patient and the innovative adaptation to an implantable device is marred with unexpected turns, political and personal setbacks, and public and scientific condemnation at each new idea. Driven by dedicated scientists and ever-advancing creative applications of new technologies, from electrocardiography to high density mapping and computational simulations, the field of defibrillation persevered and continued to evolve to the life-saving tool it is today. In addition to critical technological advances, the history of defibrillation is also marked by the plasticity of the theory of defibrillation. The advancing theories of success have propelled the campaign for reducing the defibrillation energy requirement, instilling hope in the development of a painless and harmless electrical defibrillation strategy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number6714421
Pages (from-to)1466-1473
Number of pages8
JournalIEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2014


  • Defibrillation
  • electrical stimulation
  • history of medicine

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biomedical Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'A shocking past: A walk through generations of defibrillation development'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this