The Role of Directly Applied Hypothermia in Spinal Cord Injury
John R. Dimar, Christopher B. Shields, Yi P. Zhang, Darlene A. Burke, George H. Raque, and Steven D. Glassman
Male rats were subjected to laminectomy and dived into three groups; placement of a 50% spacer in the epidural space (16 rats), severe spinal cord injury (16 rats), 50% spacer in combination with spinal cord injury (16 rats). Eight rats in each group were tested at normothermic and hypothermic temperatures. There was a significant improvement in motor scores in rats subjected to hypothermia compared with those that were normothermic after insertion of a 50% spacer. This indicates that directly applied hypothermia may be beneficial in preventing injury secondary to ischemic cellular damage.