This section of the book is from "The Complete Herbalist" by Dr. O. Phelps Brown. Also available from Amazon: The Complete Herbalist: The People Their Own Physicians By The Use Of Nature's Remedies.
Death in this case is not caused by the stomach and air passages being filled with water, but ensues in consequence of the person being plunged in a medium unfit for respiration. In no case where the body is recovered immediately after drowning, should the means of resuscitation be left unemployed. Life has been revived even in cases that were submerged half an hour.
TREATMENT. -- 1st. Treat the patient instantly, on the spot, in the open air, freely exposing the face, neck, and chest to the breeze, except in severe weather.
2nd. Send for the nearest medical aid, and for clothing, blankets, etc.
3rd. Place the patient gently on the face, the forehead resting on his wrist. This empties the mouth of fluids, and allows the tongue to fall forward, which leaves the entrance to the pipe free.
4th. Turn the patient slightly on his side, and apply ammonia, snuff, or other irritating substances, to the nostrils; then dash cold water on the face, previously rubbed briskly until it is warm. If there be no success, instantly --
5th. Replace the patient on his face, and turn the body gently, but completely, on the side and a little beyond, and then on the face, alternately; repeating these measures with deliberation, efficiency, and perseverance, fifteen times to the minutes. When the patient reposes on the chest, this cavity is compressed and expiration takes place; the pressure is removed when turned on the side, and inspiration occurs.
6th. When in the prone position, make equable but efficient pressure along the spine, augment expiration, and remove it before rotation on the side, to facilitate inspiration.
7th. Induce circulation and warmth, while continuing these measures, by rubbing the limbs upward with firm pressure and with energy, using handkerchiefs, etc.
8th. Replace the patient's wet clothing by such other covering as can be instantly procured, each bystander furnishing a coat or waistcoat. Meantime, and from time to time, let the surface of the body be slapped freely with the hand, or let cold water be dashed briskly over the surface, previously rubbed dry and warm.
Let the patient often inhale diluted pure hartshorn, as this stimulates the respiratory organ.