The trail of portable brain cooling devices used to improve patient survival rate and outcome is being trialled by the London’s Air Ambulance.

The charity that London’s Helicopter Emergency Medical Service, has become the first in the UK to trial the device which directly cooling the brain using evaporative, nasal spray technology.

The new system is to be used to induce therapeutic hypothermia following cardiac arrest.

Clinical data has shown that it rapidly and effectively reduces both brain and core body temperature, which can lead to improved survival rates after a cardiac arrest when administered along with standard life support procedures before the patient reaches hospital, compared with standard life support procedures only.

‘Essentially, it's a very small unit which contains a fluorocarbon liquid,’ Dr Richard Lyon, a registrar with London's Air Ambulance told the BBC.

‘You plug the thing into an oxygen cylinder which then vaporises this liquid and the vapour comes out of the end of two nasal cannulai.’ He added.

‘We put two tubes into the back of the nose, about half an inch from the brain, and this cold spray which comes out at about four degrees cools the inside of your nasal cavity very rapidly and that cools the brain.

‘We know quite well that if you're cooled after your heart attack, it can not only mean that your chances of surviving are greatly increased, but your chances of surviving without brain damage are too.’

London's Air Ambulance received a research grant from the College of Emergency Medicine to undertake project.


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