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Reviving the Dead--Next Medical Specialty
Old 12-15-2007, 06:45 PM   #1
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Reviving the Dead--Next Medical Specialty

Okay, here's an interesting one. Researchers are learning that we may have had a faulty understanding of what really happens when a person dies. Apparently after they stop receiving O2, some (or maybe al) cells go into a type of suspended animation, perhaps for hours. They eventually die without O2, but they also succumb if the O2 is re-introduced suddenly. Preliminary research indicates it might be possible to re-animate individuals after an extended time if we can figure out how to reintroduce the oxygen without tripping the self-destructive chain of events within the cells.

Interesting reading, but there's obviously a lot more work to be done before there are practical uses. Most of the application discussed in the article is about the cardiac emergencies, but I wonder about the possible beneficial impact on donor organs (allowing us to fill more of these requirements), extremely complex surgeries (maybe docs could get more time to work), and maybe trauma care (you still need to fix what is broken, but it would be great to have time to assemble the right team and tools). Maybe not much impact on gerontology and degenerative diseases, though I can see major potential for driving up end-of-life costs. Granny may have to die two or three times now . . .

Docs Change the Way They Think About Death | Newsweek Health | Newsweek.com
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Old 12-15-2007, 07:07 PM   #2
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Okay, here's an interesting one. Researchers are learning that we may have had a faulty understanding of what really happens when a person dies. Apparently after they stop receiving O2, some (or maybe al) cells go into a type of suspended animation, perhaps for hours. They eventually die without O2, but they also succumb if the O2 is re-introduced suddenly. Preliminary research indicates it might be possible to re-animate individuals after an extended time if we can figure out how to reintroduce the oxygen without tripping the self-destructive chain of events within the cells.

Interesting reading, but there's obviously a lot more work to be done before there are practical uses. Most of the application discussed in the article is about the cardiac emergencies, but I wonder about the possible beneficial impact on donor organs (allowing us to fill more of these requirements), extremely complex surgeries (maybe docs could get more time to work), and maybe trauma care (you still need to fix what is broken, but it would be great to have time to assemble the right team and tools). Maybe not much impact on gerontology and degenerative diseases, though I can see major potential for driving up end-of-life costs. Granny may have to die two or three times now . . .

Docs Change the Way They Think About Death | Newsweek Health | Newsweek.com

Could also change our determination of whether we really need life insurance or not!
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Old 12-15-2007, 08:12 PM   #3
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Old 12-15-2007, 09:04 PM   #4
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Old 12-15-2007, 10:42 PM   #5
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Interesting read Sam. I wonder how this will affect DNR's?
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Old 12-16-2007, 08:45 AM   #6
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Granny may have to die two or three times now . . .
I wonder if we could collect Granny's life insurance three times also.
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Old 12-16-2007, 12:13 PM   #7
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We are now applying these principles to resuscitation of "flat" babies who are at risk of brain damage at birth. Dead brain cells can be much more devastating than death itself.
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Old 12-17-2007, 03:07 PM   #8
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If i'm dead leave me alone i've made the trip and i dont want to do it again.
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Old 12-17-2007, 04:27 PM   #9
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If i'm dead leave me alone i've made the trip and i dont want to do it again.
I imagine a lot of people said that when people started shocking the heart to start it up again. What seems weird today may be commonplace tomorrow.
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Old 12-18-2007, 10:28 AM   #10
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I'd imagine a fair proportion of people who have an acute heart attack, aneurysm, or a sudden stroke are relatively young and in pretty good shape except for a clogged or ruptured artery. If we can somehow rapidly repair the problem and then resuscitate them is such a way as to keep their brain and other major systems intact, they'd have a lot of good years left.

Regarding getting old: There are lots of 30 year olds who don't think they want to live to be 85. But, almost all the 85 year olds would like some more time, thank you.
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