Lightning Strike Treatment

Medically Reviewed by Nayana Ambardekar, MD on September 12, 2021

1.Call 911

People struck by lightning may suffer cardiac arrest, so immediate and aggressive resuscitation greatly improves survival.

2. 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.

3. Begin CPR

It is safe to touch the person. The body does not retain an electrical charge.

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

  • Do not remove burned clothing unless necessary.

4. Treat for Shock, if Necessary

  • Lay the victim down with head slightly lower than torso and legs.

5. 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.