Man's heart stopped 'for 18 hours'

generic image of unidentifiable doctor with a stethoscope

Doctors believe hypothermia saved life of man in his 50s

Hypothermia is a killer - but it is believed it saved the life of a man in his fifties, whose heart stopped for an estimated 18 hours.

The 53-year-old was found by worried family members at the edge of a river in Béziers, hours after he had failed to turn up at his brother's house. He was in cardiac arrest, and was suffering from exposure. His body temperature had dropped to 22 degrees, regional newspaper Midi Libre reports.

Doctors at the CHU in Montpellier said that staff performed cardiac massage on the patient for a further four hours before his heart started beating on its own again, some 18 hours after he had disappeared.

"The team was amazed," Dr Jonathan Charbit, the head of ICU at the university hospital, told the regional daily. "This gentleman, who had no chance of waking up, is in his bed, alive."

The patient's case is to be published in an international journal.

Stay informed:
Sign up to our free weekly e-newsletter
Subscribe to access all our online articles and receive our printed monthly newspaper The Connexion at your home. News analysis, features and practical help for English-speakers in France

More articles from Health
More articles from Connexion France
Other articles that may interest you


Loading some business profiles...

Loading some classifieds...