But, if the patient is affected with ardent fever, and has a fiery heat about the breast, it will not be improper to apply cold things to the breast, and to give cold drink, not in small quantities, for it only makes the flame burn more; but in full draughts, so as to extinguish it.
—Ruffus of Ephesus20
circa 100 B.C.
Hypothermia at various levels has become useful in the care of surgical patients. In some newer cardiac and neurosurgical operations the use of cardiopulmonary bypass has been successful only with the addition of lower levels of hypothermia. While attempting to provide critically ill patients with the potential advantages of reduced metabolic activity, we have studied the clinical course of moderate hypothermia for extended periods of time in 5 patients.
For centuries physicians have recognized the value of reducing high fever commonly associated with infectious diseases and