Scientists Close To Understanding What Happens When Body Dies:
Scientists are stretching the limits of what happens when the body dies – and learn more about ways to stop the process.
Death is the end result for 100 percent of patients. But there is growing evidence that revival is possible that at least some patients whose heart and lungs have stopped working for many minutes , even hours. And brain death – when the brain stops functioning irreversibly – is also proving to be less open and closed.
For decades , doctors have reported cases in which immersed in very cold water people have revived after hours have passed. Normally , brain cells begin to die within minutes after the heart stops pumping oxygen.
Many studies have found that hypothermia protects the brain by decreasing its need for oxygen and delaying cell death. Cooling Body has become common for many patients after cardiac arrest.
Further cooling of a few degrees below normal temperature may also cause cell damage.
Cardiologists are tinkering to find the best approach. Two recent studies presented at the scientific meeting of the American Heart Association in Dallas in November tried to see if early cooling by paramedics after they get a heart is restarted helpful ( did not seem to affect survival or brain damage ) or cooling 91.4 degrees Fahrenheit or 96.8 degrees for the first day in the hospital brings better results (again, not much difference ) .
Then there is the question of how long to perform CPR . A 2012 study found the average duration in hospital was 20 minutes for patients who did not survive , 12 minutes for those who did. The AHA recommends keeping bystanders perform CPR until emergency medical services .
A Japanese study presented at the AHA meeting , based on six years of data on survival from cardiac arrest across Japan , concluded that it is worth continuing CPR for 38 minutes or more and still have the opportunity to avoid serious damage to the brain.
Definition of brain death is increasingly complex, researchers find signs of activity in both human and animal subjects whose brain waves first show that they have ” flat -lined ” to the point that there is no brain function. While some doctors use the EEG as a final check for signs of life in the brain , most are based on a series of tests of reflexes and respiration given for several hours to determine brain death …