Scouts-L Mail Archive for April of 1999: The Heimlich Manuever
The Heimlich Manuever
Fri, 16 Apr 1999 09:41:31 -0400
This morning's (Friday) "Today" show had a brief discussion with Dr.
Heimlich on the usefulness of his manuever.
He mentioned that the manuever should be used in situations of drowning,
and that lifeguards know this. He suggests that 3-4 thrusts should be
employed to expel water from the lungs prior to starting CPR. He
suggested that the thrusts are likely to spontaneously restart breathing
but, in any case, are also necessary to make the PR effective.
This approach is not covered in the Boy Scout Handbook, nor (I believe)
in the Life Saving nor First Aid MB pamphlets. If efficacious, perhaps
they should be.
Dr. Heimlich also suggested use of the manuever in Asthmatic
situations. He contended that mucous build-up often allows for only
restricted inhaling and exhaling, and that the manuever can dislodge and
expel the mucous. He also suggested that, with asthmatics, it can be
These, latter, suggestions, of course, violated the BSA recommendation
to use the manuever only where there is no apparent airflow.