The two greatest deterrents to a more general acceptance of hypothermia as a clinical modality have been (1) the fear of ventricular fibrillation1,2 and (2) the fear that hypothermia and rewarming will result in profound pathologic3-5 and metabolic6-8 changes which are difficult to correct or are irreversible. It has been felt by us that if, in spite of the control of fibrillation, the latter anxiety is justified, then serious consideration to the abandonment of clinical hypothermia is warranted.
A systematic evaluation of the effects of short and prolonged body cooling followed by rewarming has been made during the last three years by this laboratory. Information concerning the liver,9 cardiovascular systems,10,11 general pathology and histochemistry,12 and various metabolic parameters13-15 has been reported. From these experimental findings and a critical evaluation of the literature it is believed that there is no conclusive evidence to suggest