This health video will focus on how a person can survive a brain injury
Read the full transcript »
John Kuluz: Hi! Why not? Jennifer Matthews: He looks like an average toddler, but at less than 20 months old Dylan Ludwig has already had a rough life. Denise Ludwig: He was clumsy after a nap and we all like running into walls. He just had a stroke. Jennifer Matthews: That's right. When he was just fourteen months old, Dylan suffered a stroke. One side effect was brain inflammation. Dr. John Kuluz: Brain swelling does cause big problems in these children. It causes secondary injury. It limits the blood supply to the brain. Jennifer Matthews: Doctor John Kuluz and fellow researchers are using hypothermia to reduce the inflammation and problems. Dr. John Kuluz: If you sprain your ankle, there's all this inflammation and swelling. So, what do you do? You take an ice pack and you put it on the ankle. Jennifer Matthews: He says the idea is the same for the brain. Special blankets and ice bags cool patients to about 91 degrees Fahrenheit. Two hoses pump water in and out of the blankets to keep them at the right temperature. Bertie Davis, who was struck by a car just days after Christmas, he had a 20% chance of survival. Leslie Barthel: He is a very strong boy. He is a little hyper, but he is strong. Jennifer Matthews: Doctor Kuluz believes hypothermia helped Bertie's case. Dr. John Kuluz: I think it's going to definitely help us in managing the swelling of the brain. And in some cases, I think it could make the critical difference in the outcome of the patient. Jennifer Matthews: And Leslie is sure her little Bertie will fly again. This is Jennifer Matthews reporting.