Heimlich manoeuvre inventor dies aged 96


Dr Henry Heimlich, file photo 2014Image copyright
AP

Image caption

Dr Heimlich developed the lifesaving technique in 1974

US doctor Henry Heimlich, who invented the manoeuvre used to help victims of choking, has died aged 96.

Dr Heimlich died at a hospital in the US city of Cincinnati early on Saturday following complications from a heart attack he suffered on Monday, his family says.

Dr Heimlich invented the lifesaving technique, which uses abdominal thrusts to clear a person’s airway, in 1974.

In May he used the technique himself to save a woman at his retirement home.

He dislodged a piece of meat with a bone in it from the airway of an 87-year-old woman, telling the BBC: “I didn’t know I really could do it until the other day.”

Dr Heimlich was director of surgery at the Jewish Hospital in Cincinnati when he devised the technique.

Since the Heimlich manoeuvre was introduced it is believed to have saved the lives of more than 100,000 people in the US alone.

They include former President Ronald Reagan and celebrities including pop star Cher and Hollywood actors Elizabeth Taylor, Goldie Hawn, Walter Matthau, Carrie Fisher, Jack Lemmon and Marlene Dietrich.


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