top of page
  • InduQin

Doctor battles 5 hours to save man whose heart stopped twice on flight

A doctor battled for hours to save the life of a passenger whose heart stopped twice on a flight from Britain to India.

Vishwaraj Vemala was flying on an Air India flight to Bangalore with his mother when a passenger collapsed and stopped breathing.

The consultant hematologist, who works at the University Hospitals of Birmingham, reportedly began attempting to revive the 43-year-old man.

“It took about an hour of resuscitation before I was able to get him back. During this time, I asked the cabin crew on board if they had any medication,” Vemala said.

“Luckily, they had an emergency kit, which to my utter surprise, included resuscitative medication to enable life support.”

Vemala, who only had oxygen and an automated external defibrillator available, then asked passengers on board if they had any equipment that could assist him.

He was able to find a heart-rate monitor, blood pressure machine, pulse oximeter, and glucose meter to monitor the patient’s vital signs.

The man then suffered another heart attack and Vemala said it took far longer to revive him the second time.

“He was without a good pulse or decent blood pressure for nearly two hours of the flight. Alongside the cabin crew, we were trying to keep him alive for five hours in total,” he said.

“It was extremely scary for us all, especially the other passengers, and it was quite emotional.”

The pilot requested permission to land at an airport in Pakistan, but the request was rejected. The plane instead landed in Mumbai, where emergency staff were waiting on the ground.

“By the time we landed the passenger had been resuscitated and was able to speak with me. Nevertheless, I insisted he go to a hospital to be checked over,” Vemala said.


1 view0 comments
bottom of page