finger sweep


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finger sweep

a technique for clearing a mechanical obstruction from the upper airway of an unconscious patient. The rescuer opens the victim's mouth by grasping the lower jaw and tongue between the thumb and fingers. The rescuer then attempts to sweep the foreign object out of the victim's mouth with a finger. Care must be taken to visualize the object before performing a finger sweep as the object can be pushed deeper into the airway.

finger sweep

Placing a finger in the mouth or pharynx of a person with an obstructed upper airway in an attempt to clear a visible foreign body from the airway. Blind finger sweeps, that is, using the hand to clear objects that are not seen, are not recommended.

CAUTION!

The examiner should wear a glove and use a crossed-fingers technique while attempting to clear foreign bodies from the upper airway because of the risk of injury to the hand from accidental biting by the patient.