Heimlich Maneuver Inventor Uses It for First Time Doctor never had to use it in an emergency before By Newser Editors and Wire Services Posted May 27, 2016 9:30 AM CDT 67 comments Comments Dr. Henry Heimlich in a 2014 photo. (AP Photo/Al Behrman) (Newser) – The 96-year-old surgeon credited with developing his namesake Heimlich maneuver recently used the technique for the first time himself to save a woman at his senior living center, reports AP. Dr. Henry Heimlich tells the Cincinnati Enquirer that while he had demonstrated the well-known maneuver many times through the years, he had never used it on a person in an actual emergency. That changed when an 87-year-old woman began choking on a piece of hamburger at the Deupree House in Cincinnati. As it turns out, the retired chest surgeon happened to be in the room—and he knew just what to do. “When I used it, and she recovered quickly, it made me appreciate how wonderful it has been to be able to save all those lives," he tells the Enquirer.