The lives of many car crash victims could be saved by a pioneering new surgical technique, reports the Daily Mail.
A team of doctors at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, led by Dr Hasan Alam, has developed a ‘suspended animation’ technique whereby an ice-cold fluid known as ‘plasma expander’ is pumped into the bloodstream of a patient who is at risk of imminent death.
Dr Alam explains that this fluid will buy surgeons invaluable time by slowing down the dying process. Lowering the body’s temperature while at the same time carrying nutrients to organs reduces the body’s need for oxygen and greatly reduces the accident victim’s chance of sustaining brain damage.
He said: ‘By cooling them rapidly in this fashion, we can convert that almost-certain death into almost-certain survival.
‘We’re talking about 90 per cent-plus survival with normal cognitive function, normal brain activity, normal organ function. It’s challenging but it’s doable.’
Source: Daily Mail
Date Published: September 27, 2010
Author: David Brown