Overturning the drowning person – the wrong first aid method

Ho Chi Minh CityDoctor Nguyen Minh Tien, Deputy Director of City Children’s Hospital, recommends that first aid for drowning people by upside down is very dangerous because it can cause brain hypoxia.

A 7-year-old girl fell into a lake in the campus of the headquarters of Nga Bach commune, Nga Son district, Thanh Hoa, on the morning of November 1. When he was picked up ashore, his whole body turned pale, stopped breathing, his heart stopped beating, Ha Minh Hai, deputy chief of the commune police, continuously breathed, breathed, and pressed his chest. After many times of emergency, still no signs of life, Mr. Hai pushed the baby upside down on his shoulder, ran around the yard many times to push the water out. After that, he and everyone took him to the emergency medical station and then transferred to the district hospital. On the morning of November 2, the baby was discharged from the hospital.

Before the above first aid method, Doctor Tien said that Lieutenant Hai’s spirit of helping people in need is very precious and worthy of praise. However, how to give first aid? Drowning upside down is a very dangerous thing. Fortunately, the baby survived, but could face the risk of brain damage from lack of oxygen for too long.

Accordingly, turning upside down a drowning person will delay the emergency of cardiac arrest, shorten the golden time to provide oxygen to important organs such as the brain, increase the mortality rate and damage sequelae. irreversible hypoxic brain injury. This treatment does not cause water in the lungs to flow out, and at the same time can cause gastric juice to overflow, increasing the risk of aspiration.

Dr. Tien emphasized, Local first aid and correct technique are the most important, deciding the survival or brain sequelae of the victim. Accordingly, quickly bring the drowning person out of the water. Place the victim in a dry, well-ventilated area.

How to save drowning people to shore.

If the victim is unconscious, check for breathing by observing the movement of the chest. If the chest is not moving, it means that the victim has stopped breathing, it is necessary to conduct external chest compressions in the lower half of the sternum. Combine chest compressions and rescue breaths in the ratio of 15/2 (when there are two rescuers) or 30/2 (when there is only one rescuer) for two minutes and then re-evaluate whether the victim can breathe again, Is the lips pink, does it react to painful stimuli when shaken? Otherwise, these first aid actions must be continued even on the way to a medical facility.

Cardiopulmonary suffocation saves people who have stopped breathing

Instructions for chest compressions to rescue people who have stopped breathing. The source: Hoan My Saigon Hospital

If the victim is still breathing on their own, place them in a safe position on their side to allow the vomit to escape. Remove wet clothing and keep warm by covering the victim with a blanket or dry towel.

Get the victim to a medical facility promptly even if they appear to be fine or have fully recovered from first aid because of the risk of secondary difficulty breathing which can occur several hours after asphyxiation.

According to Dr. Tien, most of the victims were suffocated when brought to the emergency room at the hospital not giving first aid or giving first aid improperly lead to death or brain sequelae due to lack of oxygen.

One of the wrong ways to give first aid is to spend a lot of time on splash water. The movement of the victim backwards is not necessary and should not be done because usually the amount of water entering the lungs is very little, not the lungs are filled with water as many people think. This very small amount of water will be expelled when the victim breathes on his own. In addition, flushing also slows the time of first aid rescue and increases the risk of aspiration.

Many people apply the form rolling, by letting the child lie on his stomach on a jar, allowing the burning straw inside to roll back and forth for the purpose of “draining water” in the child’s body. This method is ineffective and causes burns.

Some victims of cardiac arrest Do not give first aid CPR and chest compressions at the accident site or during transportation to a medical facility. This causes the brain and organs to be deprived of oxygen for a long time, brain cell death, leading to death and severe brain sequelae. Therefore, it is best to give first aid as soon as the victim’s head is out of the water (before being brought to shore).

First aid for drowning properly

How to give asphyxiation to save drowning people.

Dr. Tien recommends parents to prevent drowning by not leaving young children alone at home, and keeping containers covered with water. Do not allow children to play alone near ponds, lakes, canals, canals and rivers; always accompanied by an adult. Do not allow patients with epilepsy to swim. Should teach swimming lessons, let children learn to swim.

“If everyone is properly trained in out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, then many lives will be saved, fewer lives with the sequelae of irreversible hypoxic brain damage,” said Dr. Tien shared.

The school should warn students at the end of the summer vacation about safety when swimming, or boating in the water.

In Vietnam, each year drowning kills more than 3,000 young people, most of which are children under 16 years old. Vietnam is the country with the highest rate of child drowning in Southeast Asia.

Summer drowning

How to save yourself when in danger of drowning.

Le Phuong