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Drowning First Aid

Drowning is one of the most evaluated emergency cases in life guard training centers. Emergency medicine and paramedical support have significant roles to play while attending to a case of drowning, as it involves many primary to complex medical procedures to save a life in a short duration of time.


The primary objective of a rescue worker is to make sure that the victim gets adequate amount of oxygen in his lungs through methods such as cardiopulmonary restoration. Proper precautions are taken to avoid any kind of neck injuries during the procedure. Mouth to mouth breathing technique can be administered in water if the victim has already stopped breathing. The victim has to be moved to the shore slowly with mouth to mouth breathing at regular intervals, like five seconds. In case of obstructed airway, the Heimlich maneuver is performed by holding the victim from behind and thrusting to release the blocked airway. In certain scenarios such as spine injuries, the victim is made to lie on his stomach with his head tilted to one side and arms, torso and legs in proper position. Victims have to be covered with warm clothing to prevent hypothermia and shock. Cardiac compressions in water should not be administered as it is difficult and the risk involved is greater.


Events post first aid in drowning are evaluated by the physician and treated accordingly. Antibiotics and steroids are given in case of lung infection and inflammation. Airway obstruction post first aid is treated using bronchodilators and heated IV fluids are administered to lower the blood pressure. Stomach tubes are inserted in case of vomiting. Neck injuries and spine injuries are treated. Total immobilization of the neck is required until proper scans are taken to evaluate the intensity of the injury.

Tags: #Drowning First Aid
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Collection of Pages - Last revised Date: October 25, 2020