Therapeutic Hypothermia: Keeping Cool In Emergencies

By Amber Dance, Special to the Los Angeles Times

Alaina Dixon barely remembers the end of the last Houston marathon, on an unusually hot and humid Jan. 30. The 26-year-old interior designer collapsed 200 feet from the finish line: Her heart had stopped. Paramedics shocked her twice to restart it, then rushed her to the hospital.

Doctors would later discover and fix the congenital heart defect that probably caused Dixon's collapse. But in the minutes and hours following the incident, their focus was on an entirely different organ: her brain.

So they put her on ice.

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