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November 24, 1993

Resuscitation in Near Drowning

Author Affiliations

Patrick Consult Inc Cincinnati, Ohio

JAMA. 1993;270(20):2437. doi:10.1001/jama.1993.03510200043027

To the Editor.  —In the May 26,1993, issue of JAMA, Dr Quan1 incorrectly claims that for the 2-year-old near-drowning (lake) victim in my report2 (reference 35, page 2250), the water expelled by the Heimlich maneuver may have come from the stomach and not the lungs, and water may not have been blocking the airways. She writes, taking the case out of context from another published article,3 "While [they] showed the Heimlich maneuver was associated with the expulsion of fluids, they did not prove that the water obstructed the airways or that the water came from the lungs rather than from the stomachs." The following facts in my published report prove the Heimlich maneuver removed water from a blocked airway:Prior to intubation no air sounds were heard over the lungs when an oral airway was used, while a respiratory therapist used a bag with a face mask.