Ground-breaking technique will place trauma patients in a state of suspended animation.

Trauma patients in Boston could soon be treated very coldly by doctors.  Researchers from the Harvard Medical School and the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston plan to begin the first human trials for placing patients in a state of suspended animation during surgery.  

The new method requires doctors to replace a patients blood with a cold saline solution that would quickly chill the body's temperature.  This new procedure induces extreme hypothermia in trauma patients, freezing bodies to the point of death according to the Telegraph 

The new process would completely shut down bodily functions and provide surgeons with more time to operate.  Those conducting the research expect that placing patients in suspended animation will to help reduce the need for life support and anesthetics and would reduce damage to the brain and other organs.

"If you drop the body's core temperature and brain temperature down to 15 degrees C or 10 degrees C you are talking about 60 minutes and even 190 minutes of protection," said Massachusetts General Hospital's Dr. Hasan Alam.

The normal human body temperature is 37 degrees C. Under normal circumstances, if the core body temperature drops below 22 degrees C brain death would be expected to occur.  

"By cooling rapidly in this fashion we can convert almost certain death into a 90 percent survival rate," said Alam.

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