In recent years, mild or moderate hypothermia during which brain temperature is reduced to 30–35°C, has been proposed for clinical use as an adjunct for achieving protection from cerebral ischemia during cardiac bypass injury [Nussmeier 2002], carotid endarterectomy [Jamieson et al., 2003] and resection of extra-cranial aneurysm [Wagner and Zuccarello 2005], as well as stroke and traumatic brain injury [Marion et al., 1996; Marion 1997]. It has been shown that a reduction in brain temperature as small as 2°C substantially reduced ischemic cell damage [Clark et al., 1996], or improved significantly post-ischemic regional histopathology [Wass et al., 1995]. Most of the currently used clinical studies have examined only systemic hypothermia by whole body cooling. The major methodological drawback of this approach is slow cooling rate (∼0.5°/hour) due to the large volume of the human body and arteriovenous shunt vasoconstriction [Krieger et al., 2001; Marion et al., 1997; Schwab et al., 1998]. Whole body cooling does induce systemic complications. The systemic risks may outweigh the beneficial effects of neuro-hypothermia in the current clinical practice. Selective brain cooling which keeps the rest of body at normal temperature, on the other hand, can be used to maximize the neuroprotection of hypothermia.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.