A Heimlich maneuver is a first aid technique that can be used on adults and children when they are choking with an obstruction in their airway. A person might suffer asphyxia which can become fatal if the obstruction is not removed. The key to a Heimlich maneuver is abdominal thrusts to dislodge the object that is lodged in the trachea. An artificial cough is created so that it is expelled. You need to stand behind the person and hold his waist. Place your wrists just above the person's navel and pull upward and inward to force the obstruction out of the windpipe. If the person is unconscious, straddle him and place your hand heel down just above his waist. Place the other hand on top and give quick upward thrusts to dislodge the obstruction.
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.
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Bibliography / Reference
Collection of Pages - Last revised Date: January 30, 2023