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IEEE Trans Biomed Eng. 2008 Dec;55(12):2768-71. doi: 10.1109/TBME.2008.2002154.

Taser blunt probe dart-to-heart distance causing ventricular fibrillation in pigs.

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  • 1Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI 53706, USA.


The maximum distance between the heart and a model Taser stimulation dart, called the dart-to-heart distance, at which the Taser can directly cause ventricular fibrillation (VF), was measured in pigs. A 9-mm-long blunt probe was advanced snugly through the surrounding tissues toward the heart. Five animals [pig mass=61.2+/-6.23 standard deviation (SD) kg] for ten dart-to-heart distances where the Taser caused VF were tested. The dart-to-heart distances where the Taser caused VF of the first stimulation site ranged from 4 to 8 mm with average 6.2 mm+/-1.79 (SD) and of the second stimulation site ranged from 2 to 8 mm with average 5.4 mm+/-2.41 (SD). The results help inform the evolving discussion of risks associated with Tasers.

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