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A Journal on Anesthesiology, Resuscitation, Analgesia and Intensive Care
REVIEW ARTICLES XIX SMART CONGRESS - Milan, 28-30 May 2008
Minerva Anestesiologica 2008 June;74(6):315-8
Hypothermia for brain protection in the non-cardiac arrest patient
Stocchetti N., Zanier E. R., Magnoni S., Canavesi K., Ghisoni L., Longhi L.
Neuroscience Intensive Care Unit, Department of Anesthesia and Critical Care Medicine, Polyclinic Hospital Mangiagalli e Regina Elena IRCCS, University of Milan, Milan, Italy
This review focuses on the potential application of hypothermia in adults suffering traumatic brain injury (TBI). Hypothermia is neuroprotective, reducing the damaging effects of trauma to the brain in a variety of experimental situations, such as brain ischemia and brain injury, but it has failed to demonstrate outcome improvement in a major controlled, randomized trial. The evidence for the use of hypothermia as a protective procedure is scarce and contradictory. However, evidence does suggest that hypothermia is effective in reducing intracranial hypertension after head injury. Since hypothermia has important side effects, further work is necessary before introducing this procedure into clinical practice for TBI.