During the Spring Festival, there is a high incidence of foreign objects stuck in the throat of young children. This first aid method must be learned.

During the Spring Festival, there is a high incidence of foreign objects stuck in the throat of young children. This first aid method must be learned.


On the day of family reunion, everyone happily ate melon seeds, browsed their mobile phones leisurely, and chatted with their family members from time to time. Suddenly, the children around them made an unusual sound. The eyes of the whole family were gathered. At this time, the child was speechless and his face was red. Oh no, he was stuck…

Holidays are days for enjoying joy and relaxing, but they are also a period of high incidence of foreign bodies in children’s trachea. Hunan Provincial Children’s Hospital once admitted 9 children with foreign bodies stuck in their throats within one day during the Spring Festival holiday. The foreign bodies removed included watermelon seeds, peanuts, chestnuts, pine nuts, corn, etc.

Why are foreign objects stuck in throats more common during holidays? How to avoid it? The story of the emergency room is revealed for you.

A 10-month-old baby was rushed to the hospital because food “went astray” and got stuck in the trachea

As night fell, the operating room of Hunan Children’s Hospital was brightly lit, and 10-month-old baby Lili (pseudonym) was pushed into the operating room. The whole process from anesthesia to removal of half a “misguided” sunflower seed took dozens of minutes, but the process of removing the danger made the family worry for a whole day.

“The child was playing well. I broke off half a sunflower seed for him to eat, and I was still changing his diaper. Unexpectedly, the child got stuck when he cried…” Lili’s grandmother described what happened. , full of self-blame, “I didn’t know what to do, so I could only give the child a pat on the back. Fortunately, the child’s condition was not serious. He was a little short of breath at the time.”

Later, the old man called Lilly’s mother, and the child was sent to a local hospital. The doctor determined the location of the foreign body through CT and chest X-ray, but due to limited equipment in the county hospital, the doctor was unable to remove the foreign body stuck in the trachea. Fortunately, the sunflower seeds did not completely block the trachea at this time, and the child still had room to breathe. However, the presence of the foreign body made Lili wheeze and hoarse.

“We can only watch helplessly and cannot take it out, which makes us anxious.” Lily’s mother hugged her child who was less than one year old, feeling distressed and scared.

There is no need to delay, go to the big hospital in Changsha! The family quickly decided to set out immediately. After more than 3 hours of journey, they arrived at Hunan Provincial Children’s Hospital.

“When the child arrived at the hospital, although there was stridor and lung sounds, fortunately there were no other complications, and there was no lung abscess or empyema.” Xie Jiang, the attending physician of the Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery Department of Hunan Children’s Hospital, immediately received the diagnosis. A comprehensive inspection was carried out. Through emergency surgery, half of the sunflower seeds were successfully removed.

Expert interpretation

Why are foreign objects stuck in throats more frequently during the Spring Festival and other holidays?

“Every holiday, winter and summer vacation, there will be a peak period for foreign objects stuck in the throat. During the Spring Festival, pumpkin seeds, watermelon seeds, peanuts, chestnuts…many young products have become the culprits of throat stuck.” Hunan Provincial Children’s Hospital Huang Min, chief physician of the Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, said that foreign objects in the throat frequently occur during the holidays, which is closely related to parents’ inadequate care and the physiological characteristics of their children.

During festivals, melon seeds, peanuts and other common roasted goods for entertaining guests are often placed at home. When family and friends sit around and talk, it is also a time when care is neglected. Children aged 1 to 2 years old can move around on their own. At this age, they are also in the “oral stage” (which refers to a specific growth and development stage in which infants and young children perceive the size and shape of external things mainly through contact with the lips and tongue). They can see various Likes to put food and objects in the mouth. Due to underdeveloped teeth, children cannot chew hard objects such as peanuts and melon seeds. If they laugh, cry, or fall, they can easily inhale food into the trachea and cause foreign objects to get stuck in their throats.

After accidentally inhaling peanuts, melon seeds, etc. into the trachea, the trachea is irritated and severe choking and coughing may occur suddenly. When a large foreign body blocks the trachea, there may be panic, suffocation, pale or blue complexion, difficulty breathing, and even suffocation.

If the foreign body is small, it may adhere to the tracheal wall after entering the trachea, and the symptoms may be temporarily relieved; if the foreign body is not removed for a long time, it will cause coughing, wheezing, laryngitis, fever, etc., and may even cause pneumothorax, lung abscess, and empyema. wait.

The most serious situation when a foreign object gets stuck in the throat is suffocation. The “golden time” for rescuing tracheal asphyxia is only 4 minutes. Beyond this time range, brain cells begin to enter a state of death, and the death of brain cells is irreversible.

Throat obstruction is a preventable disease. If there are young children at home, parents should not let the children out of sight. In daily life, cultivate good eating habits in children, chew carefully and slowly, and avoid talking, running, crying, laughing, etc. while eating. For children under 3 years old, do not give nuts, candies, marshmallows and other foods that are easy to get stuck in the throat.

For school-age children, parents should educate their children not to put pen caps and other small items in their mouths, and to avoid putting small buttons, glass beads or small toys and other items that may be inhaled into their mouths.

Once a foreign object gets stuck in the throat, how to deal with it urgently?

According to statistics, nearly 3,000 children die in my country every year due to accidental suffocation caused by swallowing foreign bodies or obstruction of tracheal foreign bodies. The main reason is that they fail to receive timely and correct first aid at the first time.

Many people do not know the correct first aid method for airway obstruction. When a foreign body is stuck in the throat, they often slap the back or drink water. The proportion of people who can use professional first aid method correctly is less than 10%.

Once a child or adult is found to have symptoms such as coughing, difficulty breathing, obvious foreign body sensation in the throat, suffocation, or flushing of the face due to aspiration, while calling 120 emergency number, family first aid methods, such as the Heimlich maneuver, should be used immediately. Seize the precious “golden time” for first aid.

Remember the three steps of the Heimlich maneuver: “Scissors, Rock, Paper”

The principle of this first aid method is to increase the pressure in the abdominal cavity to lift the diaphragm, increase the pressure in the chest cavity, and expel foreign matter in the airway. Specific first aid measures include:

(1) Stand or kneel behind your child and wrap your hands around their waist.

(2) Make a fist with one hand and place the thumb side against the child’s abdomen, two finger widths above the navel.

(3) Clench your fist with the other hand and punch your abdomen upward quickly and forcefully.

(4) Continue rapid impact until the foreign body is eliminated from the airway.

The three steps of “scissors, rock, and paper” are:

Scissors: 2 fingers above the child’s belly button;

Stone: Hold the fist with your hand and hold it against the 2-finger position;

Cloth: Use the other hand to wrap the “stone” and quickly impact it backward and upward 5 times until the child coughs up the foreign object.

First aid misunderstandings

1. Blindly removing with hands: Using your fingers to remove foreign objects in the throat may push the foreign objects deeper and increase the risk of suffocation for the patient.

2. Forced drinking or swallowing solid food: Drinking water or swallowing solid food such as bread may cause foreign objects to become further stuck and cause more serious obstruction.

3. Back pats (standing position): Back pats may not be effective enough when the patient is a standing adult or older child. If done improperly, the position of the foreign object may become even more unfavorable.

4. Forced vomiting: Attempting to remove foreign objects by inducing vomiting may cause vomitus to enter the airway and aggravate obstruction.



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