Blocked Airway / Choking

What is a Blocked Airway?

Choking is a blockage of the upper airway by food or other objects, which prevents a person from breathing effectively. Choking is a medical emergency that requires quick, appropriate action by those nearby.

Symptoms of Choking

  • Coughing or gagging
  • Hand signals and panic (sometimes pointing to the throat)
  • Sudden inability to talk
  • Clutching the throat: The natural response to choking is to grab the throat with one or both hands. This is the universal choking sign and a way of telling people around you that you are choking.
  • Wheezing
  • Passing out
  • Turning blue

Treatment for Choking/Blocked Airway

The Heimlich maneuver can be utilized- The quick, upward abdominal thrusts force the diaphragm upward very suddenly, making the chest cavity smaller. This has the effect of rapidly compressing the lungs and forcing air out.

Seeking Treatment

If you or a loved one is in need of emergency intervention, immediately call 911.
At iCare, our team of exceptional and experienced physicians will immediately assess your situation, employ life saving intervention as needed and provide a physical examination.  Your care team, lead by experienced ER Physicians may perform further tests, such as chest X-rays, or laboratory tests. In the event that a patient requires hospitalization or other procedures that we do not offer at iCare, we are able to transfer them to a hospital for admission.