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September 1956

Hypothermia in Open Heart Surgery

Author Affiliations

From Department of Surgery, University of Illinois College of Medicine and St. Lukes Hospital.

AMA Arch Surg. 1956;73(3):493-502. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1956.01280030119014

The differences of opinion as to whether open or closed techniques in repair of congenital or acquired cardiac defects should be done is based primarily on the fact that the mortality rate has been higher in the open heart technique. It would seem that the development of simpler methods of artificial oxygenation will soon make the correction of cardiac defects possible with a very low mortality. Hypothermia as a means of allowing limited open heart technique has appealed to many because of its simplicity and availability.

In our own experience with hypothermia we have followed the lead of various excellent investigations into this problem. The early work of Fay,1 Talbot,2 McQuiston,3 along with the experimental work of Bigelow and associates,* helped to point the way. There are many fundamental investigations that have been done in hypothermia as reviewed by Virtue.8 Cookson and associates9 repeated the