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Human "Suspended Animation" Trials To Start This Month

samzenpus posted about 2 months ago | from the buck-rogers dept.

Medicine 104

An anonymous reader writes in with news about a UPMC Presbyterian Hospital trial starting this month which brings us one step closer to suspended animation. "The researchers behind it don't want to call it suspended animation, but it's the most conventional way to explain it. The world's first humans trials will start at the UPMC Presbyterian Hospital in Pittsburgh, with 10 patients whose injuries would otherwise be fatal to operate on. A team of surgeons will remove the patient's blood, replacing it with a chilled saline solution that would cool the body, slowing down bodily functions and delaying death from blood loss. According to Dr. Samuel Tisherman, talking to New Scientist: 'We are suspending life, but we don't like to call it suspended animation because it sounds like science fiction... we call it emergency preservation and resuscitation.'" We covered this story a few months ago when it was announced.

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New film title (1)

Errol backfiring (1280012) | about 2 months ago | (#47092697)

Ah. We have a new film title: The Resuscitator.

Re:New film title (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about 2 months ago | (#47093277)

Already exists in the 'oral' section of adult films.

Re:New film title (1)

Muad'Dave (255648) | about 2 months ago | (#47099249)

Wasn't there a bad Sci-fi film called Re-Animator [imdb.com] with some wild-eyed doctor on the cover wielding a gigantic syringe?

But hold on... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47092705)

Science fiction is cool and full of stuff we'd be excited to see happen. "Emergency preservation and resuscitation" doesn't sound at all interesting.

Re:But hold on... (5, Insightful)

Minwee (522556) | about 2 months ago | (#47092889)

Science fiction is cool and full of stuff we'd be excited to see happen. "Emergency preservation and resuscitation" doesn't sound at all interesting.

That's only because you're not the one with an injury which would be fatal to operate on.

If you were, and your alternatives were "Death" or "Tea and cake, then death", then it would sound pretty damn awesome.

Re:But hold on... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47092951)

> your alternatives were "Death" or "Tea and cake, then death"

Is there really any other alternative? (for a given number of repetitions of "Teak and cake").

Re:But hold on... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47095615)

Depends on whether you're afraid of death or not too, I would like to add. I'm not. I am afraid of horrible pain and slow death.

Re:But hold on... (1)

fahrbot-bot (874524) | about 2 months ago | (#47093637)

If you were, and your alternatives were "Death" or "Tea and cake", then it would sound pretty damn awesome.

I'll have the fish.

Re:But hold on... (1)

Dogers (446369) | about 2 months ago | (#47093803)

Thanks for flying Church of England!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v... [youtube.com]

Re:But hold on... (1)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 2 months ago | (#47094923)

We've run out of cake.

Re:But hold on... (1)

Wolfrider (856) | about 2 months ago | (#47096229)

The cake is a LIE!!

Re:But hold on... (1)

fyngyrz (762201) | about 2 months ago | (#47097005)

Nuke the damn thing from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.

Re:But hold on... (1)

Guppy (12314) | about 2 months ago | (#47101797)

We've run out of cake.

OH GOD We're all gonna die!

I'm not a doctor, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47092729)

A team of surgeons will remove the patient's blood, replacing it with a chilled saline solution that would cool the body, slowing down bodily functions and delaying death from blood loss.

I'm sure someone will mention the obvious thing I'm missing here, but replacing blood with a saline solution means no red cells. Don't we need red cells to carry oxygen everywhere in our bodies?

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (2)

gl4ss (559668) | about 2 months ago | (#47092795)

that's where the chilled "suspended" part comes in... to make the body mostly inactive.

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (1)

confused one (671304) | about 2 months ago | (#47092839)

cold enough to shut everything off, but not cold enough to damage cells. Basic principle originates in all those "miraculous" drowning victims who fall through winter ice and are resuscitated 20 or 30 minutes later. Using an infusion of cold saline probably has the advantage of getting the whole body cold as quickly as possible.

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47093425)

First, I am a doctor, and I know both Drs Tisherman, and Rhee, having met both in person and having read many of both of their papers. They are both stellar leaders in the field of trauma surgery. I am therefore posting as AC to avoid the perception of any even quasi-official criticism. These are my thoughts on the subject and are meant only to educate the readership, not to try to detract from the work cited

Second, I'm not jumping on " confused one"'s post, just taking an opportunity to correct a minor misconception, and use it as a hook to provide some detail as I understand them.

cold enough to shut everything off, but not cold enough to damage cells. Basic principle originates in all those "miraculous" drowning victims who fall through winter ice and are resuscitated 20 or 30 minutes later.

The "miraculous drowning victims" to which you refer usually survive due to the mammalian diving reflex [wikipedia.org] , which is a distinct event (although hypothermia is involved) involving a slowing of the heart, vasoconstriction, and a closing of the glottic opening due to the face being submerged. The principle this proposed technique is using is more of a physio-chemical slowing of the reactions in the whole body, but of prime importance the heart, kidneys, and brain (and to a lesser extent the liver and lungs).

The proposed candidate patients (I presume, not having read their IRB nor their treatment protocol) would involve patients with penetrating trauma (knife or GSW) that have already had a resuscitative thoracotomy [wikipedia.org] (as per my interpretation of the New Scientist article [newscientist.com] ). This means that the patient is either in extremis [merriam-webster.com] , or has lost vital signs (no B/P, no pulse), at this point, under certain criteria, the chest is opened and the heart prolapsed from the pericardium, the aorta is cross-clamped and open massage or defibrillation is performed along with massive volume resuscitation. For these patients, this is literally, pulling out all the stops to try to save them. It often has a low survivability (~7%) as there is literally nothing else that can be done....until this trial.

The effect would be to suspend cellular aerobic metabolism [wikipedia.org] and induce a state of hypometabolism that could be sustained by anaerobic metabolism [wikipedia.org] . Not quite the suspended animation of science fiction. This would limit the amount of oxygen radicals that can lead to reperfusion syndrome [wikipedia.org] , but this is not a given.

The questions that remain: how will humans as a "higher lifeform" with a more temperamental neurological makeup deal with this hypometabolic state? Will they be able to cool them fast enough in the hectic conditions of a trauma-code to be useful? What will their neurological status be? What about the blood already lost - the patient will likely need significant transfusions, will this reduce the effectiveness of the treatment due to transfusion related lung injury [wikipedia.org] or transfusion related immunosuppression [sciencedirect.com] . Will the patient tolerate the hypothermia as this is traditionally considered a part of the lethal triad [wikipedia.org] , for that matter, saline is a very acidic substance (to the body), how will they tolerate that acidosis (also part of the triad). I hope they are able to obtain useful information about these (and other) questions that may make this a viable treatment option for the future.

Regardless, I applaud Dr Tisherman and his team in taking this fight to save trauma patient to the next level in an attempt to reach further into the void to pull potential survivors back. I wish both them and their patients the best of luck with this study.

Using an infusion of cold saline probably has the advantage of getting the whole body cold as quickly as possible.

Yes, the whole body needs to be cooled quickly.

mod up (1)

ganjadude (952775) | about 2 months ago | (#47093673)

Very useful information Thanks!

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (2)

jlb.think (1719718) | about 2 months ago | (#47093767)

Comments like yours are why I read slashdot. Thanks for the education. It has been a long time since I was clicking on links learning from a comment.

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (1)

pitchpipe (708843) | about 2 months ago | (#47093807)

MOD PARENT UP

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (1)

durrr (1316311) | about 2 months ago | (#47094539)

It works for other mammals, humans just require some technical details sorted out and good protocols made. Regarding possible injuries from the cooling: It doesn't really matter, if it saves lives, it saves lives.

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47096447)

It doesn't really matter, if it saves lives, it saves lives.

Well, saving a life, just to lose it 2 weeks later due to a complication is not a win....it just drags out the agony and wastes "resources" that could be used to save patients with a higher likelihood of survival. You then have to consider the neurological outcome of the patient. Do you think that living like Terry Schiavo [wikipedia.org] would be a good outcome? Some would say yes, a life is a life. Others (e.q. those who value quality of quantity) would not want that kind of outcome. But there are even worse fates...locked-in syndrome [wikipedia.org] - that I would not wish on my worst enemy.

I'm not saying that these are going to be the outcomes, just that these are potential outcomes....we have to look at them critically and ask ourselves, is it worth it? These are some of the answers they're looking for with this kind of research

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (1)

amaurea (2900163) | about 2 months ago | (#47094577)

When I saw this article's headline, I first thought it was about this [ted.com] , but this is clearly something quite different. Do you know anything about the hydrogen sulphite idea discussed in the video?

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47097837)

Was about what? Can't you tell it without us going to the link?

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47099399)

I watched the video, I'm not sure, but I may have heard of the effect that hydrogen sulfide can have. I certainly dealt with it in the inorganic labs during undergrad, but don't think that was a popular use for it back then. It does have the potential to be a compliment to the project that Tisherman, and Rhee are working on. Would be interesting to see what a combination of the two could effect.

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (1)

linuxguy (98493) | about 2 months ago | (#47095379)

Thanks for an informative post, complete with wikipedia links for people like me who do not understand many of these medical terms. Its not very often that a poster will go to this length to make an informative and useful post.

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (1)

WhoBeI (3642741) | about 2 months ago | (#47095537)

Thanks for the information.

So glad I read this... (1)

pslytely psycho (1699190) | about 2 months ago | (#47095835)

...instead of seeing AC and the length and shuddering.
Any more when I see a long AC comment, I frequently scroll past it due to the APK troll.

I'm glad I stopped for just a second. Marvelous comment. Thank you.

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (1)

Guppy (12314) | about 2 months ago | (#47096179)

saline is a very acidic substance (to the body), how will they tolerate that acidosis

Can't they just use Ringer's Lactate or Hartmann's solution instead? That should buffer the acidity a little bit better.

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47099513)

Good thought, and in many circumstances, that's what we would do. The problem is that the calcium in both LR and Hartmann's are "incompatible with blood". Packed red cells use sodium citrate to bind calcium so that and residual clotting factors don't clot the blood [umich.edu] and the small amounts of calcium are thought to override this. [The rule for normal saline is controversial, but currently the FDA basically mandates normal saline]. Now you could use a special solution that buffers the saline with sodium bicarbonate, but that would be expensive and time consuming. It might end up being required, but we're not there yet. And bicarb is not a benign substance [asnjournals.org] for the body either.

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47098495)

+9001
/. still lives!

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (1)

Reziac (43301) | about 2 months ago | (#47100497)

So that made me wonder:

With an injured person who might not ordinarily have time to reach medical help, is there any benefit to deliberately triggering this diving reflex?

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (1)

thundergeek (808819) | about 2 months ago | (#47101321)

Now I know what doctors do while I'm in the waiting room for 45 minutes after showing up 15 minutes early.

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47092853)

I'm glad you pointed out this obvious flaw in this procedure before it was too late! I was scheduled to have my blood replaced this month (what? oh, by delicious nacho cheese, of course) and my face would've been pretty red (or yellow, I guess) if the trained medical professionals had forgotten something they learned in grade-school...

captcha: thickest - like your head or like that nacho cheese (yummy!)

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (1)

compro01 (777531) | about 2 months ago | (#47092939)

Yes, but at the temperatures they're inducing, metabolic activity is basically nil, meaning oxygen essentially isn't needed, at least over the time frames they're talking about.

I'm not a doctor, but... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47092941)

The idea is that the body WON'T be receiving oxygen while in that state. And that it won't have to. The saline solution and the cooling is supposed to prevent tissue deterioration even in the absence of the oxygen-fueled human metabolism, so that when the normal blood is returned and the person raised back to standard body temperature later, they will still be alive.

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (1, Insightful)

sillybilly (668960) | about 2 months ago | (#47093993)

How about an immune system like white blood cells to keep up the policing? They better cool the patient to just above freezing point, as even then there may be some active bacteria in him/her that will start the putrefaction/decomposition process. The only way to preserve a body is through mummification or formalin solution, or the like, where absolutely all life is fully destroyed, including bacterial cells and human cells. If you could completely clear her body from any fungi and bacteria that live in it in symbiosis, I think she'd die just from that, but if she don't, if she's completely sterile and don't need white blood cells at all, then you got a chance with this saline solution. Every time you fart it's a reminder that bacteria live in you, and without any bacteria or fungi in your body my guess is that you would die really fast, or at least be very vulnerable to nonsymbiotic deadly infection, or at the very least, things like digestion would get worse, as it's aided by the bacteria breeding in your saliva continuing the digestion in your stomach. Even when you go through an antibiotic/antifungal/antiviral regimen, and have to eat biotics like yogurt after the treatment, you don't lose all bacteria, fungi and viruses in your body.

Re:I'm not a doctor, but... (1)

Reziac (43301) | about 2 months ago | (#47100665)

I had a similar thought, that if the replacement fluid included an antibacterial agent (perhaps a bacteria-specific virus engineered to suicide after a few generations, if such a thing is possible) that killed off every bacterium in its path -- that would greatly reduce the risk of an introduced infection, and if you have have to repopulate regions like the gut that can't function without bacteria, well, that's not hard to accomplish.

"Worlds first" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47092749)

I'm sure it isn't the worlds first and it has been done quite a few times before and this is the eventual result of non-standard practice finally being done officially with all safeguards and paperwork.

There was even a person on here that had it done to them on the last article on this not that long back. Yeah that one in the related links there.
Either that or it was someone they knew at least. It is a bit fuzzy, sorry I just woke up from emergency preservation.

Re:"Worlds first" (2)

Anubis IV (1279820) | about 2 months ago | (#47093199)

You're most likely thinking of this comment [slashdot.org] . Anyway, it was a similar procedure, but was by no means the same as the one being discussed here. Namely, his procedure involved no saline solution, and the chilling came before the removal of blood, rather than as part of the same step, suggesting that he was chilled via some external mechanism (my father worked in a hospital when he was in college in the late '60s to early '70s, and he's mentioned that for people with high fevers, they would, if I recall correctly, bathe them in baths of ethyl alcohol filled with ice as an emergency step to try and prevent brain damage).

I'd imagine that this commenter's procedure would have been significantly more dangerous than the one in the summary, simply because it would have taken longer to chill him using external methods and wouldn't be as consistent throughout his body. A quick chill has the benefit of causing metabolic activity to drop off rapidly. The longer you stretch it out, the more danger the patient would be in.

Re:"Worlds first" (1)

pslytely psycho (1699190) | about 2 months ago | (#47095883)

" he's mentioned that for people with high fevers, they would, if I recall correctly, bathe them in baths of ethyl alcohol filled with ice as an emergency step to try and prevent brain damage"

I had one of those alcohol ice baths when I was 15 in 1974. I was admitted comatose with 105F fever due to tonsillitis. The infection had spread beyond the tonsils. I went from a sore throat to unconscious in less that 10 hours.
I was in the intensive care for 5 days.
It's crude, but it works.

partial coma tx in use for years already (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47092811)

transport is the #1 reason, avoid getting so sick is the remedy? http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=spirit+health+wake+up+intentional+healing talk about waking up more alive than ever? absorbing less deception helps too http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=ani+defranco+self+evident

The closet thing to time travel (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47092835)

that you'll ever see. I'd volunteer to be Phillip Fry in a heartbeat.

Re:The closet thing to time travel (2)

Rhymoid (3568547) | about 2 months ago | (#47092883)

You might end up like Joe Bauers.

Re:The closet thing to time travel (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47093441)

Or Lieutenant Stewart (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Planet_of_the_Apes_(1968_film))

Re:The closet thing to time travel (1)

jpellino (202698) | about 2 months ago | (#47093629)

Or Drs. Hunter, Kimball, and Kaminsky, Dave.

Re:The closet thing to time travel (1)

KingOfBLASH (620432) | about 2 months ago | (#47092927)

You'd be better off getting on a space ship going the speed of light for a year.

No need to become a popsicle, and your life will not be dependent on people remembering to pay the electric bill before your thaw date

Re:The closet thing to time travel (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 2 months ago | (#47093105)

the only way to make a space ship go at the speed of light would be to convert it to photons or some other rest-massless particle (and incidentally throwing a twin for every such particle in the opposite direction). we already know how that could be done, via antimatter anhilation, but reassembling the spaceship from massless particles is left as exercise for the student.

Re:The closet thing to time travel (1)

KingOfBLASH (620432) | about 2 months ago | (#47093309)

Traveling at a significant fraction of the speed of light will do the same thing and is possible without said annihilation :P

Project Orion. (1)

jpellino (202698) | about 2 months ago | (#47093569)

Best *known* method for interstellar travel is Orion - anywhere from 3-10% of c - but in the real world it won't beat this solution to market.

Re:The closet thing to time travel (1)

I'm New Around Here (1154723) | about 2 months ago | (#47093633)

Yes, but you will be a significant fraction of a light year away from Earth at the end of the trip. Traveling at a significant fraction of the speed of light away from Earth. I don't see the upside here.

Re:The closet thing to time travel (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 2 months ago | (#47095105)

actually, even going 0.99 C time dilation is only 7 to 1. Hit a pebble, your ship will be annihilated

Re:The closet thing to time travel (1)

KingOfBLASH (620432) | about 2 months ago | (#47097217)

So you're saying all those sci fi books lied to me? :(

Re:The closet thing to time travel (1)

angel'o'sphere (80593) | about 2 months ago | (#47094093)

Matter/Antimatter annihilation does not necessarily send the created photons into opposite directions.
And definitely not on a grand scale.
Well, but if you can manage to introduce me to my anti matter twin, I will be pleased to meet him. Once and for all we will settle the question who the evil twin is!

Re:The closet thing to time travel (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 2 months ago | (#47095075)

you would have to involve other particles with mass for that to be true, conversation of momentum demands it

Re:The closet thing to time travel (1)

DougF (1117261) | about 2 months ago | (#47097873)

My wife has conversation of momentum as well...LOL.

Re:The closet thing to time travel (1)

angel'o'sphere (80593) | about 2 months ago | (#47097915)

Exactly, or not ...
The two particles, the matter and the antimatter one, already HAVE momentum. So if they annihilate into gamma quants it is very very unlikely that the two quants fly into exact opposite direction.

Re:The closet thing to time travel (1)

currently_awake (1248758) | about 2 months ago | (#47095731)

Relativistic time dilation won't extend your life, as the total amount of time you are living is the same (to you). Of course your next of kin might disagree, as he/she has to wait for your ship to return so they can declare you dead and inherit all your stuff.

Re:The closet thing to time travel (1)

KingOfBLASH (620432) | about 2 months ago | (#47097231)

Well the OP isn't suggesting extending his life. He's suggesting going into suspended animation so he can go see what the future looks like, and if we manage to survive as a society.

If you decide to go get frozen for a thousand years, you're putting an awful lot of trust in the people maintaining your equipment. I remember a story some years back that one of these cryogenic places went bankrupt, and they thawed and buried the bodies.

You face a similar risk if you decide to "time travel" in this manner, and frankly given how volatile the world can be, there's a big chance you'll be forcibly thawed early

Looks Like, Walks Like, Quacks Like (5, Interesting)

l0ungeb0y (442022) | about 2 months ago | (#47092871)

We are suspending life, but we don't like to call it suspended animation because it sounds like science fiction... we call it emergency preservation and resuscitation.

Someone needs to remind these guys that something is only Science Fiction until it becomes Science Fact.
Nothing wrong with calling it Suspended Animation if that's EXACTLY what it is.

Re:Looks Like, Walks Like, Quacks Like (4, Insightful)

OzPeter (195038) | about 2 months ago | (#47093203)

Nothing wrong with calling it Suspended Animation if that's EXACTLY what it is.

I think that the problem they are trying to avoid is that most people have a preconceived ideas as to what "Suspended Animation" should be. These people are trying as much as possible to stay away from those preconceived ideas, and hence avoid being ridiculed for not living up to a hundred years of sic-fi hype.

As an analogy, what would happen to a company that after years of design and testing released A FLYING CAR!!!! But play down the fact that this car could only perform vertical flight limited to 6 feet high whilst in your own driveway, solely to facilitate under car maintenance? Sure it flies, and it is useful, but it don't quite meet all those expectations.

Re:Looks Like, Walks Like, Quacks Like (1)

CrimsonAvenger (580665) | about 2 months ago | (#47093215)

As an analogy, what would happen to a company that after years of design and testing released A FLYING CAR!!!! But play down the fact that this car could only perform vertical flight limited to 6 feet high whilst in your own driveway, solely to facilitate under car maintenance? Sure it flies, and it is useful, but it don't quite meet all those expectations.

Bad analogy. Noone would market a car as a "flying car" is the only flight it could do is lift up enough to make it easier to change the oil.

Re:Looks Like, Walks Like, Quacks Like (1)

OzPeter (195038) | about 2 months ago | (#47093269)

Bad analogy. Noone would market a car as a "flying car" is the only flight it could do is lift up enough to make it easier to change the oil.

Why is it a bad analogy? All these doctors are doing is chilling people down in order to perform a brief surgery, so I can understand why they are trying to stay away from a moniker of "SUSPENDED ANIMATION!!!!!"

The point I was making with my analogy is that a flying car company wouldn't do it either.

Re:Looks Like, Walks Like, Quacks Like (1)

l0ungeb0y (442022) | about 2 months ago | (#47093291)

I think that the problem they are trying to avoid is that most people have a preconceived ideas as to what "Suspended Animation" should be

From Websters:
suspended animation noun: a state in which the processes of the body (such as blood circulation) stop or become very slow for a period of time while a person or animal is unconscious

Websters et al create definition of words and phrases based upon what the common consensus of their meaning is. The Scientists are just making an arrogant attempt to pre-empt the inevitable media hype that will happen regardless of how they try to spin it.

Arrogant? Yes, because it shows a condescending and cynical attitude towards laymen. But doesn't matter -- we aren't all fucking morons as these Scientists think and we will call it Suspended Animation, because that is actually what it is.

Re:Looks Like, Walks Like, Quacks Like (1)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about 2 months ago | (#47093283)

We are suspending life, but we don't like to call it suspended animation because it sounds like science fiction... we call it emergency preservation and resuscitation.

Someone needs to remind these guys that something is only Science Fiction until it becomes Science Fact.
Nothing wrong with calling it Suspended Animation if that's EXACTLY what it is.

It's not. This seems more like an induced coma than anything. I doubt it slows or stops aging which is what I would call suspended animation. This may be, however, the first step towards that goal.

Re:Looks Like, Walks Like, Quacks Like (1)

DigiShaman (671371) | about 2 months ago | (#47093627)

Probably because in SciFi, suspended animation connotes a near infinite amount of time. Say, for those very long durations of space flight. With the preservation and resuscitation, time is still limited.

Re:Looks Like, Walks Like, Quacks Like (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47094117)

We are suspending life, but we don't like to call it suspended animation because it sounds like science fiction... we call it emergency preservation and resuscitation.

Someone needs to remind these guys that something is only Science Fiction until it becomes Science Fact.
Nothing wrong with calling it Suspended Animation if that's EXACTLY what it is.

It's pretty much like the term "suspended animation" has cooties because it was used in science fiction...

more test subjects (1)

sribe (304414) | about 2 months ago | (#47092881)

I think I know where they can find 535 more test subjects ;-)

Re:more test subjects (1)

NatasRevol (731260) | about 2 months ago | (#47093083)

Pretty sure we don't want to keep that set around.

Re:more test subjects (1)

gmhowell (26755) | about 2 months ago | (#47096303)

Pretty sure we don't want to keep that set around.

Control group. Instead of saline, they'll be injected with grape jelly.

+1 No one will be able to tell the difference. (1)

jpellino (202698) | about 2 months ago | (#47093397)

Pity the poor DC bar and restaurant owners, though.

Bon Voyage (1)

hey! (33014) | about 2 months ago | (#47092901)

I wish the experimental subjects well. If the procedure works, they will not only be saving themselves, but many future patients whose injuries can't be treated quickly enough. And if the procedure becomes routine, it may someday pave humanity's road to the stars.

Saline? (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about 2 months ago | (#47093013)

I predict contamination of the saline by parasitic bacteria leads to the first zombies.

Re:Saline? (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about 2 months ago | (#47093087)

I say we define people whose animation is suspended by this technique to BE "zombies" and "the undead"

Re:Saline? (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about 2 months ago | (#47093231)

Well, they were adverse to the oxymoron suspended-animation, perhaps internally they were already using the oxymoron 'the living dead'.

Re:Saline? (2)

KingOfBLASH (620432) | about 2 months ago | (#47093091)

While you're being a bit snarky, actually the sterile nature of the fluid will be quite important. We already have staph infections running around hospitals; you might indeed have a situation where people die because they get "bad fluid" much the same way in the early days of HIV you got people who were infected because there was not adequate screening.

Re:Saline? (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about 2 months ago | (#47093219)

Snarky? That word does not mean what you think it means... or your reading comprehension box is on the fritz.

Re:Saline? (1)

KingOfBLASH (620432) | about 2 months ago | (#47093609)

Or the word does not mean what you think it means. Or perhaps what you wrote comes across differently then what you intended :P

Re:Saline? (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about 2 months ago | (#47093753)

Unlike most people, I have this annoying habit where I check the definitions for pretty much everything. Frequently checking etymology as well. Why, I even read articles!

See, I have the superpower of being able to admit that i'm wrong and frequently acknowledge my fallibility. So the first thing that occured to me upon reading your comment was that perhaps my understanding of the word snarky was wrong.

I checked. It's not.

True, I can't compensate for people who read things that aren't there...

Re:Saline? (1)

KingOfBLASH (620432) | about 2 months ago | (#47097213)

Well I would define "snarky" as comments made by someone trying to be a curmudgeon, and a wise ass.

Checking the dictionary, I see I'm right (although they use a bit different phrasing: 1: crotchety, snappish
2: sarcastic, impertinent, or irreverent in tone or manner )

Are you telling me you were NOT being sarcastic, and you really believe the results of this research will be zombies?

Re:Saline? (1)

Jmc23 (2353706) | about 2 months ago | (#47097421)

No, I was trying to be funny.

I know the tendency of slashdotters to read-between-the-lines when there isn't anything there, and I actually specifically chose every single word in that sentence to not be loaded. It does not criticize or implicate any parties, it is as precise as necessary, there is no slang or words with double meanings. It is as literal and devoid of possible misinterpretations as possible...

or so I thought.

Because obviously, (2)

qeveren (318805) | about 2 months ago | (#47093065)

Anything that sounds like science fiction MUST be terrible and is to be avoided at all costs.

Re:Because obviously, (3, Interesting)

gstoddart (321705) | about 2 months ago | (#47093235)

Anything that sounds like science fiction MUST be terrible and is to be avoided at all costs.

Well, if you're doing real research and want to be taken seriously, I can see why you'd prefer to differentiate yourself a little.

If you said "and we'll put the patient into suspended animation", and the ethics review board rolls their eyes at you, you might have a huge problem.

Some stuff, sure, it can sound like science fiction. But for medical research, you'd think you want to make sure people know you're not just talking out of your ass.

Re:Because obviously, (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47096359)

How does someone opt out of being experimented on in this manner? It doesn't seem ethical unless they get pre-approval from the patient (or perhaps family member) beforehand.

Re:Because obviously, (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47099545)

The article notes that this procedure for the time being will only be used on those who would otherwise die. Since your only other choice is death and I assume they will take care of most of your medical expenses as a "thank you" I don't think most people would complain.

Better look like Gods than sci-fi writers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47093465)

"Suspended animation" sounds too sci-fi, we don't like that, we prefer to call it ressucitation which makes us look like Gods, which seems more realistic.

I swear (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47093909)

If I wake up and my Fuddruckers is a ButtFuckers I'm going to be pissed.

Herbert West, Re-Animator (1)

Indigo (2453) | about 2 months ago | (#47093917)

I know how this story turns out...

Loia McMaster Bujold (1)

MouseTheLuckyDog (2752443) | about 2 months ago | (#47094587)

Sounds like something similar to what Lois McMasterBujold described about 20 years ago.

Re:Lois McMaster Bujold (1)

fyngyrz (762201) | about 2 months ago | (#47097085)

Yet still following Frederick Pohl's "Age of the Pussyfoot [wikipedia.org] ", ca. 1969, wherein a fireman, badly burned, is suspended as no tech is yet available to remediate his injuries.

In this book, Pohl not only covers suspension for later remediation, but also basically describes the modern cellphone, although ours don't have quite as many features as his does. Yet. :) Also some other very cool tech and social ideas.

There are quite a few great ideas that you might think came out of the 80's and 90's SF writers minds, but were roundly preceded by the first round of masters, of which Pohl was certainly one.

Re:Lois McMaster Bujold (1)

MouseTheLuckyDog (2752443) | about 2 months ago | (#47099925)

Does Pohl describe replacing the blood with a cryofluid as Bujold does?

Why not Perfluorodecalin? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47094641)

Certainly chilling the subject to slow down metabolic processes will work. But there are a number of substitutes for blood that actually carry oxygen. Perfluorodecalin is one. They are more costly than salt water, but they still allow low-level metabolic activity to continue without cell damage. Perhaps they feel the damage is minimal, but why have it at all?

Why not Perfluorodecalin? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47099503)

I assume that the article is being a little overly dramatic, I highly doubt they specifically seek to remove ALL blood from the patient. While most of the blood is removed (and I assume stored for replacement) I imagine that there is still a significant (10-30%) amount left in the body throughout the process, probably more than enough to facilitate cell functions in such a low metabolic state.

Blood is a liquid organ, not just a vehicle (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47094651)

Blood is not merely a liquid that carries useful materials. It is an internal organ measured by any standard definition chosen. It is a soft organ and is moved around the body. Replacement for brief periods may work, but do not think that the body will remain unharmed. Certainly efforts should be made to restore the same blood back into the patient when not clinically inadvisable. .

DARPA (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47099229)

I think I heard of the military (DARPA specifically) playing around with doing something similar, if a soldier is severely wounded on the battlefield the intent would be to suspend them for 40 minutes or so by cooling them using some method while they were evaced to a medical facility. Not sure if they ever actually did it to anyone or how far they got with any prototypes beyond animal testing.

Just one question... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47100465)

Let's see, NASA couldn't use rocket pack (MMU instead), or spaceship, etc, because they sounded too much like "science fiction" (and ignorant fools in Congress might cut budgets, thank you Sen. Proxmire).

And in the process, made the most exciting thing in human history *boring*.

These folks can't use "suspended animation" because it "sounds like science fiction" - and WHAT THE FUCK'S THE PROBLEM WITH IT SOUNDING LIKE SCIENCE FICTION?

Probably too many friggin' no-nothings, of which we have an abundance in the US, certainly....

                mark

sad (1)

Mr_Nitro (1174707) | about 2 months ago | (#47101125)

this should have like...2000 comments? bah...fucked up world.... lets go out and spend some dollars on shit ... fuck yeah...

Red Dwarf (1)

tmjva (226065) | about 2 months ago | (#47101179)

Rather than suspended animation, they should invent the Stasis chamber in Red Dwarf. (Then wake up 3 million years later with the descendants of your evolved cat!)

What was it originally used for? Oh yeah, to suspend crewman David Lister for 18 months without pay...

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