Document Detail

Acute aortic thrombosis following incorrect application of the Heimlich maneuver.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  11904818     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
The Heimlich maneuver has been widely accepted as a safe and effective method of relieving life-threatening foreign-body upper airway obstruction. When applied incorrectly, however, it may result in direct trauma to the intraabdominal viscera. Only two cases of major aortic complications have been reported. Both have involved thrombosis of an abdominal aortic aneurysm. We report two further instances of aortic thrombotic complications due to the incorrect application of the Heimlich maneuver. The first case resulted in thrombosis of an abdominal aortic aneurysm. In the second case the abdominal thrusts caused dislodgement of thrombus from an atherosclerotic nonaneurysmal aorta, which resulted in thromboembolic occlusion of both lower extremities. In both cases, as with the two previously reported instances, massive reperfusion injury resulted, which eventually proved fatal. When applied incorrectly, the Heimlich maneuver may result in direct trauma to the abdominalaorta and is an unusual cause of acute aortic thrombosis.
Lloyd Mack; Thomas L Forbes; Kenneth A Harris
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Case Reports; Journal Article     Date:  2002-01-17
Journal Detail:
Title:  Annals of vascular surgery     Volume:  16     ISSN:  0890-5096     ISO Abbreviation:  Ann Vasc Surg     Publication Date:  2002 Jan 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2002-03-25     Completed Date:  2002-10-04     Revised Date:  2004-11-17    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8703941     Medline TA:  Ann Vasc Surg     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  130-3     Citation Subset:  IM    
Division of Vascular Surgery, London Health Sciences Centre, University of Western Ontario, Canada.
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MeSH Terms
Acute Disease
Aged, 80 and over
Airway Obstruction / complications,  therapy*
Aortic Aneurysm, Abdominal / complications
Arteriosclerosis / complications
Fatal Outcome
First Aid / adverse effects*,  methods
Thromboembolism / complications
Thrombosis / diagnosis,  etiology*,  surgery
Vascular Surgical Procedures

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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