CDC director helps save choking woman

Dinner with doctors turns into MacGyver affair


If you’re going to choke on your dinner, you should definitely do it in the company of doctors and the head of the CDC.

Dr. Thomas Frieden, director of the CDC, was dining with doctors at a Bakersfield, California, restaurant Monday night after a national symposium on valley fever. Community leader Pauline Larwood began choking on her steak during the meal. Several of her medical dining companions rushed to her side.

When the Heimlich maneuver didn’t help, Dr. Royce Johnson, UCLA professor of medicine, borrowed a friend’s pocketknife and a pen to clear Larwood’s airway. Frieden monitored her pulse during the entire MacGyver-esque procedure.

Larwood is reportedly doing well.