Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Page one done, page two halfway there.

How about some mind boggling medical news found on the Bendis Board this morning? The new science of resuscitation

As recently as 1993, when Dr. Sherwin Nuland wrote the best seller "How We Die," the conventional answer was that it was his cells that had died. The patient couldn't be revived because the tissues of his brain and heart had suffered irreversible damage from lack of oxygen. This process was understood to begin after just four or five minutes. If the patient doesn't receive cardiopulmonary resuscitation within that time, and if his heart can't be restarted soon thereafter, he is unlikely to recover. That dogma went unquestioned until researchers actually looked at oxygen-starved heart cells under a microscope. What they saw amazed them, according to Dr. Lance Becker, an authority on emergency medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. "After one hour," he says, "we couldn't see evidence the cells had died. We thought we'd done something wrong." In fact, cells cut off from their blood supply died only hours later.
These researchers figured out it was the sudden reintroduction of oxygen that killed the otherwise healthy cells and now it looks like new methods of resuscitation could be developed to revive people who have been dead for up to an hour after cardiac arrest. Maybe even longer.

Sweet googly moogly!

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