Freezing of one hindlimb of a dog has been demonstrated by studies carried out after thawing1 to result in damage to the tissues and capillaries of the frozen site involving the skin, subcutaneous tissues and muscles down to the bones and leading to a lowered plasma volume and fatal shock. It was also observed that a greater portion of the loss in volume of the circulating plasma occurred during the first three hours after the freeze, at which time microscopic evidence of generalized visceral cellular damage and capillary dilatation (atony) was minimal or absent.2 The interval between the third and the fourth hour was observed to be the borderline period beyond which generalized visceral capillary stasis and parenchymatous damage became pronounced.
When no therapy was instituted these animals1 usually died in shock about eight hours after the freeze. In addition, it was observed3 that a severe
MUIRHEAD EE, KREGEL LA, HILL JM. THERAPY OF SHOCK IN EXPERIMENTAL ANIMALS WITH PLASMA AND SERUM PROTEIN SOLUTIONS: III. FREEZING SHOCK: CONCENTRATED PLASMA AND SERUM THERAPY WITH AND WITHOUT AMPUTATION OF THE DAMAGED EXTREMITY. Arch Surg. 1943;47(3):258–282. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1943.01220150039004
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