There is a rich history for the use of therapeutic hypothermia after cardiac arrest in neonatology and pediatrics. Laboratory reports date back to 1824 in experimental perinatal asphyxia. Similarly, clinical reports in pediatric cold water drowning victims represented key initiating work in the field. The application of therapeutic hypothermia in pediatric drowning victims represented some of the seminal clinical use of this modality in modern neurointensive care. Uncontrolled application (too deep and too long) and unique facets of asphyxial cardiac arrest in children (a very difficult insult to affect any benefit) likely combined to result in abandonment of therapeutic hypothermia in the mid to late 1980s. Important studies in perinatal medicine have built upon the landmark clinical trials in adults, and are once again bringing therapeutic hypothermia into standard care for pediatrics. Although more work is needed, particularly in the use of mild therapeutic hypothermia in children, there is a strong possibility that this important therapy will ultimately have broad applications after cardiac arrest and central nervous system (CNS) insults in the pediatric arena
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