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Florida doctor saves 9-year-old girl after child has seizure on flight to Mexico

Posted at 7:18 AM, Apr 06, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-09 03:39:19-04

DELRAY BEACH, Fla. — A Delray Beach doctor is credited with saving a 9-year-old girl who was unresponsive after she had a seizure on a Delta Airlines flight to Mexico.

According to a news release from Tenet Florida Cardiovascular Care, Dr. Joseph Ricotta was on a Delta Airlines flight from Atlanta to Mexico on Easter Sunday. 

While at 30,000 feet, the airline pilot asked on the loudspeaker if there was a doctor on-board.

Ricotta, a Boca Raton resident, was the only doctor on-board and rushed to help the child.

"She was on the floor in the aisle. I resuscitated her and we got her back. She ended up doing well. I ended up having to get on a headset and communicate with ground control and a doctor on the ground with the airline to make the decision to either abort the flight and make an emergency landing or keep going forward. Thankfully she ended up doing well and made a full recovery,” said Ricotta in a written statement.

Ricotta is a vascular surgeon and endovascular therapy specialist at Tenet Florida Cardiovascular Care and Regional Medical Director for Vascular Surgery and Endovascular Therapy.