• London ambulance source data on choking incidence for the calendar year 2016: an observational study

      Pavitt, Matthew J.; Nevett, Joanne; Swanton, Laura L.; Hind, Matthew; Polkey, Michael I.; Green, Malcolm; Hopkinson, Nicholas S. (2017-12)
      Introduction Complete foreign body airway obstruction is a life-threatening emergency, but there are limited data on its epidemiology. Methods We conducted a retrospective analysis of data collected routinely from London Ambulance Service calls coded as being for choking was undertaken for the calendar year of 2016. Results There were 1916 choking episodes of significant severity to call for emergency assessment in London during 2016, 0.2% of total calls requiring an ambulance response, an average of 5.2 per day. The incidence increased at the extremes of age. Calls coded as choking occurred at times consistent with lunch and dinner and less frequently at breakfast. Peak incidence occurred at Sunday lunchtimes and on Wednesday evenings. Conclusions Choking is a substantial health problem for Londoners to seek emergency assistance. Choking is more frequent at the extremes of age with a higher incidence at lunch and dinner time. Greater public awareness of choking and its management could help to prevent avoidable deaths. https://bmjopenrespres.bmj.com/content/4/1/e000215 This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/ http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmjresp-2017-000215