Brain damage post cardiac arrest is a problem that seems to be at least somewhat effectively ameliorated by cooling the body of the patient as soon as possible to around 91°F (33°C). Current commercial systems are intended to be used by paramedics or clinical staff in the ER (see ThermoSuit and Arctic Sun for examples), but cooling patients as early as possible and bringing this technology to more places may help more people survive with better outcomes.
Researchers at Hohenstein Institute in Boennigheim, Germany have developed a vest that, once put on a patient can deliver rapid cooling. The system depends on a zeolite cartridge that releases its contents into the volume of water inside the vest, cooling it through adsorption and so the patient. The researchers believe that this type of devices will one day come as part of AED packs, allowing bystanders that managed to keep the person alive deliver an even greater level of care without any previous training.
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