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November 18, 1974

"Choking Death" Booklet

Author Affiliations

Fireman's Fund American Life Insurance Company San Francisco, CA 94119

JAMA. 1974;230(7):960. doi:10.1001/jama.1974.03240070012003

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.


To the Editor.—  The article in MEDICAL NEWS (229:746, 1974) that describes the Heimlich method of treating "café coronary" is excellent because it brings additional attention to an unnecessary and preventable fatal emergency and points out that the layman can successfully apply this rescue technique.The article's first paragraph, however, gives the impression that this method is effective in all food inhalation emergencies. This is incorrect and unfortunate, because it tends to dispel interest in learning other methods of emergency treatment that many doctors think to be more effective, or have a long history of success in application.There is the method developed by Drs. Eller and Haugen of Ft. Lauderdale, Fla, in which the bolus is removed by pulling the victim's tongue forward so that it can be grasped, tweezer-like, between the index and middle finger of the rescuer. This has proved effective in many emergencies. However, even this