"There is another version of this type of device that has been around (FDA approved) for a couple of years now. It's called LifeVac and it has been adopted by several fire departments, schools, skilled nursing facilities and families all across the eastern seaboard as well Europe and Canada. Only costs $69.95 and even that number can come down with different promotions that are offered."
Looks like the earliest mention I can find of LifeVac is May 15, 2014, while Dechoker is from 2011. I wonder if this is a case of "imitation is the sincerest form of flattery", or whether they were independent ideas?
...just like unclogging a toilet with a plunger!
I wonder how effective this is, and what are the risks to the lungs after whatever's stuck gets dislodged.
I guess when you're choking, you'd take that risk if all else fails (if you or someone around you can act fast enough to pull a vacuum cleaner...)
To the later reply, well, in the movie they actually use a normal household vacuum.
On the cost side, you can probably get a nice vacuum cleaner for $150 :)
I'm still wondering about how effective vs. how risky this technique might be though
maybe I've seen too many movies, but what about the old knife and ball pen Tracheotomy?
Personally as a doctor I'm surprised they are teaching the heimlich, it's an outdated procedure with limited success, in ANZ first aid you're meant to slap on the back a bunch of times before going for physical removal
According to Roger White MD of the Mayo Clinic and American Heart Association (AHA), "There was never any science here. Heimlich overpowered science all along the way with his slick tactics and intimidation, and everyone, including us at the AHA, caved in."
It always seemed to me that pounding someone on the back was as likely to force the obstruction farther into the trachea as it was to cause it to be expelled. After all, the victim is presumably trying to breathe, so dislodging the object without a strong upward thrust seems like a bad idea. Guess that's not the case.
A further complication is that the Dechoker would probably only work for solid objects, so emergency responders would have to determine the nature of the airway obstruction before deciding whether to use the Dechoker, or some other method (i.e., another suction device to remove semisolid debris like vomit). So you'd additionally have to track what the nature of the obstruction was and exclude cases where the Dechoker was applied inappropriately, or where the Dechoker was not used and it could have been.
I think this is the real issue. Your lungs simply aren't very strong.
Even pro-athletes who we would normally associate with respiratory fitness, like runners and swimmers, have more capacity and efficiency then they do strength.
...I'm terrified of choking, fwiw.
It is a 510K-exempt Class I medical device, according to the FDA. So its manufacturer has registered with the FDA but there is no FDA approval of its claim of being able to dislodge objects from a patient's airway. Nor is any data provided to demonstrate that it is at all effective.
That's somewhat of a "duh!" but I guess it's there just for legal reasons.
Side note for some of the other comments - there are multiple ways to apply pressure to the thoracic cavity in order to express something lodged in the throat. If the person is large and you cannot wrap your arms around them, have them stand with their back against the wall and you thrust from the front just below the diaphram.
The goal of CPR is to resuscitate an individual who is not breathing. Whether the individual sustains other injuries through the course of being resuscitated does not matter. Better to be alive and injured than dead!
1) Did the Heimlich manoeuvre
2) Performed it properly
3) Continued proper behaviour after the Heimlich manoeuvre failed
There is a good chance the people who died were alone, that everyone around them panicked and froze up, or that nobody realized the person was in danger (people who choke are actually more likely to leave the room than try to tell someone). People often don't call 911 until it's too late.
I do see the OP's point that potentially education and teaching of what to actually do in these scenarios would be more effective than buying a vast number of these devices. I took a first aid course and I can say that while the majority of people know what the Heimlich manoeuvre is, I don't believe they'd behave properly in a chocking situation.
That said, I think these should definitely be put to trial runs to find out :)
That said, the same logic applies to this device.
Edit: Not saying it couldn't help, but I don't think it's reasonable to assume most of those lives could be saved by putting some posters up unless you have some evidence.
In other words, dude its 150 bucks!
Just checked Amazon - you can buy an AED for $959 minus $100 coupon. The recommended lifespan of an AED is 5-8 years, so for a smalltime operator you're looking at an amortized cost of $107-175 per year.
$10 per month is a rounding error in the operating budget of a public accomodation, and I don't see how you can possibly get upset about that. Let alone something like a ship that's multiple hours away from the closest possible medevac. A container ship likely burns more fuel than that in an hour of operation.
Won't someone please think of poor Maersk's quarterly profits? Or even worse, my Amazon crap might cost another $0.01 per tonne...
Even if you don't care that it's The Right Thing To Do, the cold truth is that if someone dies there's tons of expensive things that happen. If an employee dies there's insurance or comp to pay, there's the cost of hiring a replacement and so on, etc. And on a social level we lose their economic output and its effect on the aggregate economy.
There were 3 hostesses standing next to the phone. I was the bus boy.
After a manager told me to go all the way to the back and get another manager, I told him we should probably call 911 first.
The fire dept was across the street.
When I walked up to the phone, none of the hostesses had called 911, because no one told them to.
I called 911, but it was too late.
The man died.
They may eventually want to target individuals and those not in the high-risk area -- in which case the price will need to drop. However, for their current stage and what they're after it makes sense.
I've heard from an EMT friend that most choking deaths happen in restaurant bathrooms. Somebody gets up to excuse themselves to be polite and dies alone beside the dyson hand dryers.
(Dechoker medical device could end deaths) by choking
Dechoker medical device could end (deaths by choking)
I'm afraid it is not limited to English, and a very common phenomenon across many languages that use prepositional phrases. Languages that do avoid these usually have a complicated case system. Even there, we have other ambiguity-types that are also common in English, such as relative clauses, quantifiers, etc.
Ambiguity is a natural part of languages. It can be fun :-)
Nobody new how to perform a Heimlich maneuver, and I don't know if it would have worked. I wonder if this device would have the suction strength to pull the obstruction in that situation, probably yes.
I took the full 3-day course for the first time this year, and the extra time for practicals was excellent.
I performed heimlich on a roommate a long time ago when I was in college, but it turns out the pressure he was breathing in with was apparently more than the force I exerted trying to get him to push the object out. I simply helped dislodge the object, but it ended up going into his lungs rather than out.
Afterwards he told us he could feel the food (what was obstructing airway) in his lung.
He didn't feel concerned enough about it to go to the hospital afterwards, and we were just college students so we didn't feel we had any reason to override his decision.
Basically, in my experience, if I've ever inhaled water (never food) I generally find that there's several minutes (or hours depending on quantity of fluids) of intermittent coughing where I feel like my body is doing something to make it easier for me to expel the fluids.
In terms of food, depending on quantity I was imaginging over course of several days (weeks?) perhaps the body is able to expel the solids in similar fashion.
My roommate was not a very talkative person, but we did hang out quite a bit while he lived with us, and nothing ever appeared abnormal, and he never got sick so I'm guessing he just kept the messy details to himself.
Strange, I did my last first aid course about 5 years ago, and remember a few methods other than the Heimlich. The Heimlich has this weird PR where it seems that it's the only method that the US knows about. It's a bad method because it's not very good at applying pressure in the right places, and done by enthusiastic naifs it can break ribs (less of a problem) and do serious damage to internal organs (more of a problem).
Three alternatives to the 'one and only' Heimlich:
1) Start with short, hard, upward slaps on the victim's back, with the victim bent over if possible. This is more helpful in cases of partial choking
2) Get the victim on the ground on their side, and using both hands, push down on the side of their ribcage in short, sharp bursts. This uses the same 'pop a cork' mechanism as the Heimlich, but you get a lot more power and you won't damage internal organs (and are unlikely to break bones).
3) As a last resort, try and blow the obstruction further into the lungs. It will require surgery to remove, but that's better than dying.
The side chest compressions tend not to break ribs - normal CPR compressions do, but CPR needs to squish the heart - a smaller, tougher organ than the lungs. The heimlich also has to be done in an upright position, which makes it more awkward to do if you're not physically strong; it's all bicep strength, and you can't use your own weight to your advantage. Chest thrusts are also not complicated by a patient who is obese or pregnant.
Just googling around, found some research arguing for (normal) chest compressions over heimlich, from 2000: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10767497
Conversely, the instant this thing succeed in dislodging an obstruction, it will apply negative pressure to a lung (or, really, two of them.)
I've had multiple pneumothoraxes and I was able to breathe (suffering pain.. but I didn't die). You can fix that later with a drain.
If you apply vacuum to the airway, you're just going to pull the diaphragm way up into the chest cavity. The lung won't collapse unless the lung tissue itself rips, or the diaphragm gets herniated. This is probably not going to happen, unless you experience explosive decompression or actively try to hold your breath against the suction.
I wonder, does it work on people with beards? I know this usually causes trouble with sealing masks like this. Even if it doesn't, it's still a really useful device for all the non-bearded people out there, but I have to wonder.
Also, many sailors on industrial boats that I've seen have beards, so I'd suspect that it was a consideration in it's design and probably why the tube is there, instead of just a mask, like the yellow plunger thing.
I'm assuming the company knows the answer to this, I think I'll send them an email.
Also, it seem all you have to do for a beard is apply a little more pressure to form that seal
Someone gave her the Heimlich maneuver and it worked. Good thing to learn.
Am I missing some profound piece of engineering that warrants this price? Or is more of a "I think I can charge $X and make s 9x profit" move (which I don't fundamental object to.)
Liability insurance and FDA approval. If you've ever seen the words "For Research Purposes Only" on equipment, that's an indication of profitable device, but small market.
I know people who sell equipment to IVF (in-vitro fertilization) labs that are insane about safety, so their equipment is certainly good enough for general use. However, their volume is sufficiently low that it's just not worth the monetary expenditure given that they have an out simply by labelling things correctly.