June 25, 2009
New Medical Study Shows TASER Device Has Minimal Physiological Effect on Humans in Simulated Arrest Scenarios
Fighting or Fleeing from Police is Most Detrimental to Health
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz., – TASER International, Inc. a leading provider of technology solutions and the market leader in electronic control devices (ECDs), commends the Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota for the groundbreaking study, Cataecholamines in Simulated Arrest Scenarios, which was presented this week at the Australasia College of Emergency Medicine (ACEM) Winter Symposium 2009 in Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia. The research led by Dr. Jeffrey D. Ho of the Department of Emergency Medicine, Hennepin County Medical Center, looked at the human physiology involved in common subject behavior, as well as police tools and tactics in arrest-related scenarios.
The study was presented at ACEM Winter Symposium 2009 by Dr. Donald M. Dawes, another author on the study and a member of the Department of Physiology and Biophysics, University of Louisville, Kentucky.
According to the presentation, “Some authors have opined that the temporal relationship between ECD use and ARDs [arrest–related deaths] may be related to acute stress cardiomyopathy induced by high circulating catecholamines, rather than an immediate electrical-induced arrhythmia. In this study, we compared the stress response during simulated use of force encounters.”
For the study, sixty subjects performed one of the following five arrest-related scenarios:
1) A 150-meter sprint, simulating flight from law enforcement officers,
2) 45-seconds of hitting and kicking a heavy bag, simulating physical combat with officers,
3) A 10-second TASER® X26TM ECD exposure,
4) A K-9 training exercise of approximately 30 seconds, or
5) An Oleoresin Capsicum (O.C.) spray exposure to the face.
From the data obtained in the study, the researchers concluded that “the ECD was one of the least activating of catecholamines while the simulated combat was one of the most activating. The simulated combat also lowered the pH the most of all the tasks.”
“Catecholamines are the bodies ‘hyper hormones’ and include the well-known adrenaline. They are an indicator of the amount of stress felt by the body,” stated Mark Kroll, PhD, FACC, Adjunct Professor of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Minnesota and Chairman of the TASER International Scientific and Medical Advisory Board. “This study is one of the first to look at the human physiology in common arrest-related situations with various police tools and tactics. The research is groundbreaking in that it clearly shows that the use of a TASER device does not significantly lead to the increase of catecholamines in the human body. However, struggling or running from police causes dramatic increases which can begin to cascade toward sudden death,” added Kroll.
The poster presentation of the study can be found at http://www.ipicd.com/docs/6-24-09-Catecholamine%20-%20pH%20-%20Lactate%20poster.pdf.
About TASER International, Inc.
TASER International’s products Protect Life and Protect Truth. TASER provides advanced Electronic Control Devices (ECDs) and innovative secured digital evidence collection and management solutions for use in the law enforcement, medical, military, corrections, professional security, and personal safety markets. TASER ECDs use proprietary technology to incapacitate dangerous, combative, or high-risk subjects who pose a risk to law enforcement officers, innocent citizens, or themselves in a manner that is generally recognized as a safer alternative to other uses of force. The TASER® AXON™, a revolutionary on-officer tactical computer and video/audio recorder, combines with an integrated digital multi-media evidence storage and management platform -- EVIDENCE.COM -- to provide an end-to-end solution to capture, store securely, and analyze digital evidence and information in ways that enables tactical and strategic decision making by law enforcement, as well as for legal evidentiary use. For more information please call TASER International at (800) 978-2737 or visit our website at www.TASER.com.