“The worst thing is when a foreign body enters the upper respiratory tract. A person suddenly changes. We were communicating, and the person starts to cough, even turn blue. He can’t breathe, he usually tries to get up from the table, he is distracted”, – the doctor of chest surgery described the behavior of the choked person in the “Health Time” program of “Zinių radio”.
According to him, a hand attached to the neck is a universally recognized sign that a person is snapping.
“The worst thing is that a person is conscious, but cannot say anything,” P. Gradauskas explained.
He advises not to give up
According to the doctor, a suffocated person should clearly show those around him that a foreign body is stuck in his airways and he cannot breathe.
Bystanders in such a situation should perform the Heimlich maneuver: hug the person who is jumping from behind, put both hands below the sternum and squeeze with a sudden movement. This raises the pressure in the chest, which will most likely help expel the foreign body.
One click may not be enough: “This action must be repeated, repeated and repeated again”, P. Gradauskas assured.
Of course, you should not forget to call the emergency medical services. But there are no doctors yet, and the person loses consciousness, what to do?
“It is all the more important not to give up. When a person loses consciousness, he relaxes even more. The Heimlich maneuver can then be even more effective. If a person’s muscles were tense before, he resisted, now our help can be more effective for him”, explained P. Gradauskas and added that, of course, no one wants to wait for such a moment.
May resemble a heart attack
When asked about the possible causes of choking, the surgeon noted that choking is not common, so people often do not think about it and are not careful.
All drivers should be able to perform the Heimlich maneuver, but as Mr. Gradauskas notes, studying and learning are two different things.
According to the doctor, choking is sometimes mistaken for acute cardiovascular conditions.
“It is believed to be a myocardial infarction, a heart attack. And in fact, after death, it was found that it was a piece of barbecue stuck in”, P. Gradauskas said and assured that such cases have occurred in Lithuania.
The danger is not only in eating
Eating while lying down can be dangerous. However, bedridden patients sometimes have no other option.
However, according to the doctor, choking in this situation occurs less often, because the person feeding – the person’s relative or nursing specialist – does it carefully.
The doctor also remembered an unusual finding in the patient’s respiratory tract: “We have removed the drill used by dentists to pull the nerve from the root quite deep in the bronchi (…) perhaps the patient moved, or the dentist released his fingers and that drill got stuck very deep.” It was not easy to remove it,” the doctor explained, adding that he still keeps the extracted foreign body in his collection.
A paper clip, a pin and other small things are often swallowed carelessly, even by adults. It does not matter that the foreign body is not sharp – it is necessary to remove the object that has entered the respiratory tract.
Broken pieces of dental prostheses or teeth themselves entering the respiratory tract are a classic of medical practice.
The difficult part of the surgeon
In the radio show, P. Gradauskas also said that the work of a surgeon is not always pleasant. Although this happens rarely, the doctor admits: the hardest thing is to say that a person is lost.
“It is neither a success nor a failure. One lung surgeon used to say that 10 percent patients die, and 90 percent survives – a good stat for a healer. But for our patient it is all or nothing: 100 percent. to some side.
It is very difficult to break the news when a patient dies in the operating room. Thank God it rarely happens, but it has happened. When you leave, you see the hopeful eyes of a person… That’s the hardest thing to say,” P. Gradauskas said.
He added: nobody taught how to behave in such situations, experience had to be gained from life.
“The most expensive lessons, the ones you can’t buy, are what not to do.” You can buy courses where they will explain how to do things, but no one will show you their mistakes or teach you how not to do things,” noted P. Gradauskas.
The doctor assured that doctors do not forget patients who died on the operating table – every surgeon has his own cemetery.
Tags: fatal risk similar heart attack worst person conscious speak word