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Lightning Strike Treatment

Victims of lightning strikes may suffer cardiac arrest. They require prompt, aggressive resuscitation.

1. Help the Person When It Is Safe


If you are at risk from ongoing lightning, wait until danger has passed or move to a safer place if possible.
 

2. Begin CPR


It is safe to touch the person. The body does not retain an electrical charge. Because cardiac arrest is the most common cause of death in lightning victims, immediate resuscitation of people struck by lightning greatly improves survival.

If the person is not conscious and does not appear to be breathing normally, use an automated external defibrillator (AED), if one is on hand, or:

For a child, start CPR for children.
For an adult, start adult CPR.
Do not remove burned clothing unless necessary.
 

3. Treat for Shock, if Necessary


Lay the victim down with head slightly lower than trunk and legs elevated and supported.
 

4. Follow Up


The emergency medical team will assess the person's condition.
At the hospital, the person will be examined for internal or neurological injuries and burns.

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