LifeVac Device


Introduction/Indications for use

The Lifevac is a non-powered single patient portable suction apparatus developed for resuscitating a choking victim when standard current choking protocol has been followed without success.  Currently there is no device available for use to revive a choking victim once the standard procedure of clearing the mouth of debris and the Heimlich maneuver have failed.  The device is simple to use making it available to the public and may be the last resort to revive a choking victim when death is imminent.  The unit consists of a plastic plunger with a one way valve and a facemask that attaches to the plunger.


Contraindications for use

Patients with an endotracheal tube already in place should not have the Lifevac used.  The use of this device is also contraindicated if the patient is not choking and is breathing on their own. It should not be used for uses other than resuscitating a choking victim.  The device is for use only on humans.  The device should only be used on the face.  This device is for use only on a choking victim, it is not approved for a drowning victim. Contraindications also include hypersensitivity to plastic.  This device does NOT contain latex. The device should not be used on premature infants under 8 pounds.


Risks and Benefits of use/General Warnings and Precautions

Risks of use may include bruising of the face from application of the mask, cough after removal of the object.  There is a low grade risk of lung collapse from suction, and a risk of sensitivity to the materials that make up the unit.  In order to avoid these risks the device must be used according to the instruction manual.  Benefits include lifesaving from choking where death otherwise would be certain.


General Care

Upon receiving the Lifevac unit inspect contents for any defects or cracks.  If any defects are noted please return the unit for a full refund.  Store Lifevac at room temperature, do not store in garages or attics as extremes of heat and cold may affect the integrity of the unit.  An ideal location for storage would be in a kitchen cabinet next to the fire extinguisher.  The kit contains one Lifevac suction unit and three face masks- small, medium, and large or child, adolescent, and adult.


Setup instructions

Attach the Lifevac suction unit to the facemask as shown in diagram 1.  Practice using the unit several times in order to become familiar with the device.  While holding the facemask with one hand depress the plunger with the other hand and firmly pull back.  You should hear air rushing into the Lifevac and the plunger should easily be pulled back.  If there is resistance or no air is heard call Lifevac at for further assistance.  The facemasks are for one time use and should be disposed of after use, the Lifevac unit is reusable.  Call Lifevac at to order more facemasks.


Instructions for Use

In a situation where a victim is choking, time is of great importance.  If you observe a victim who appears to be choking first follow the current choking algorithm which is included in this instruction manual.  If there are two people witnessing the episode, have one perform the current choking algorithm and the other ready to use the unit in case it is required.  If no other witness is present, follow the current choking protocol first then obtain the unit after the protocol fails.  Failure to comply with these instructions could result in death of the victim.


BLS Protocol

If a choking victim is witnessed but is awake look for the universal sign of choking.  Call 911 and if the victim is unable to ventilate any air then use the Heimlich maneuver as shown in the diagram. If the Heimlich fails after three attempts or the victim becomes unconscious then it is recommended to attempt use of the Lifevac.  Obtain the unit and select the mask appropriate for the size of the individual.  ie  large for adults, medium for adolescents, and small for childern. Attach the mask firmly to the Lifevac units as shown in diagram 2.*


1. Place the mask over the victim’s nose and mouth and with one hand hold both the jaw and the mask and pull upwards and forwards to open the airway.

2. Depress the plunger with the other hand and firmly pull back.  Make sure the mask creates a seal around the nose and mouth in order to prevent air leaking around the seal and decreasing the suction.  If the victim fails to venitilate after the first attempt repeat steps a and b.  Check the mouth for the removed object.

3. If the victim is not spontaneously breathing attempt CPR in order to ventilate and check for rise and fall of the chest.  Check for pulse and if no pulse begin standard CPR.



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