Removing a foreign object in the airways – Adult

Photo: Samuli Raappana / Suomen Punainen Risti

Act quickly.

Recognise an emergency quickly. If several helpers are available, one of them calls the emergency number 112 immediately, while another one begins first aid.

First aid for an adult with a foreign object in the airways

  1. Support the person’s body and bend their upper body downwards.
    Then, slap them firmly between the shoulder blades
    five times.

  2. If the foreign object is not removed from the throat and you are alone, call

  3. Continue first aid with abdominal thrusts, i.e. the Heimlich manoeuvre. Stand behind the person and place one fist below their diaphragm. Grab your fist with your other hand. Thrust sharply inwards and upwards. Repeat five times, if necessary.

  4. If the obstruction is not removed, alternate between five slaps between the shoulder blades
    and five thrusts.

  5. Start resuscitation if the person loses consciousness and is not breathing
    normally. Notify the Emergency Response Centre about the change in the situation.
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Removing a foreign object in the airways of an adult Video: Samuli Raappana / Suomen Punainen Risti

Call the general emergency number 112 in an emergency.

Follow these instructions when making the emergency call

First aid instructions: removing a foreign object