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Arizona lawmaker saves woman who suffered medical emergency on plane

State representative Amish Shah, D - District 24, was flying back to Phoenix from an ER doctor convention when a flight attendant asked for help.

PHOENIX — An Arizona state lawmaker came to the rescue of a woman who was going into shock on a flight from Washington D.C. to Phoenix.

State Representative Amish Shah, D - District 24, was flying back to Phoenix from an ER doctor convention when a flight attendant asked for help.

"All of a sudden I heard 'there's a medical emergency on the plane if you're a physician, ring your call button,'" Shah said. 

Shah said the woman had a severe peanut allergy and the flight attendants had asked people not to open or eat anything with peanuts in it. 

Shah said the woman was going into anaphylactic shock. 

"She was obviously in a little bit of distress," Shah said. "Complaining of tongue swelling, throat closing."

There was a medical kit on board, Shah said, but not everything worked. The pulse oximeter, which measures the oxygen level in the blood, was dead. 

So, Shah improvised and put his Apple Watch on the passenger's wrist. The watch has a built-in EKG and pulse oximeter.

"It's better than nothing," Shah said. "We were able to use all those things to get her vital signs."

The plane diverted to Albuquerque where paramedics took the woman to the hospital. Shah said he and another doctor on the plane stayed with the passenger for several hours until the plane landed. 

Shah said he followed up with her family hours later and she was doing much better. 

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