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Doctors Put Human Under Suspended Animation

Doctors Put Human Under Suspended Animation
Suspended animation is a procedure that puts the body's functions on pause to allow traumatic injuries to be treated that could otherwise be deadly.

By    |   Wednesday, 20 November 2019 08:20 AM

Doctors at the University of Maryland School of Medicine have put at least one patient in a state of suspended animation in a procedure that puts the body's functions on pause to allow traumatic injuries to be treated that could otherwise be deadly. 

“I want to make clear that we’re not trying to send people off to Saturn,” Dr. Samuel Tisherman at the University of Maryland School of Medicine told New Scientist. “We’re trying to buy ourselves more time to save lives.”

Tisherman said his team has used the technique, officially called emergency preservation and resuscitation (EPR), on at least one patient, as part of a U.S. trial on the procedure.  

He outlined the trial's progress during a symposium on Monday at the New York Academy of Sciences. Ariane Lewis, director of the division of neuro-critical care at NYU Langone Health, warned that the procedure trials are still in the early stages.  

The procedure is being used on people arriving at the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore with an injury such as a gunshot or stab wound, who have had a cardiac arrest, and who have lost more than half their blood, leaving doctors just minutes to operate. 

When using the procedure, doctors rapidly cool the patient's body to around 10-15 degrees Celsius, or 50-59 degrees Fahrenheit, by replacing all of the person's blood with ice-cold saline, causing the patients' brain activity to almost completely stop and the heart to quit beating. 

The patient's body is then disconnected from the cooling system and moved to the operating theater, giving surgeons two hours to operate. Under normal circumstances, the brain can only go without oxygen for about five minutes before damage occurs. 

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the trial, which was to have compared the results of 10 people undergoing the technique to 10 people who have not. Patient consent is not needed, as their injuries are most likely fatal and there is no alternative treatment to save their lives. 

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Doctors at the University of Maryland School of Medicine have put at least one patient in a state of suspended animation in a procedure that puts the body's functions on pause to allow traumatic injuries that would otherwise be deadly to be treated. 
doctors, medicine, animation, surgery, critical
334
2019-20-20
Wednesday, 20 November 2019 08:20 AM
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