Two Philadelphia doctors are championing an unconventional new treatment for keeping cardiac-arrest victims alive, with as little brain damage as possible: just give them hypothermia
At 3 p.m. last June 22, Pam Barco’s heart stopped. The 46-year-old ER clerk at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia was near the end of her shift when she felt dizzy, put her head down on her desk, and suddenly stopped breathing. A nearby co-worker saw Barco slump over and shouted, “Staff emergency!” Minutes later, a dozen doctors and nurses surrounded Barco’s body. They shocked her with a defibrillator. No response. They shocked her twice more. Nothing. Then: Beep. Beep. Beep.