Radical new approach to cooling

5. CAERvest-Medic-Carrying-via-Handle-CMYKCAERvest® is a unique new patent-pending cooling technology that delivers rapid core body cooling to victims of heatstroke, cardiac arrest and other conditions.

Heatstroke is a relatively common occurrence during extreme training and endurance events and is treated with early cooling. Rapidly reducing the core body temperature has been shown to reduce complications associated with heat-related illness, including multisystem organ failure, neurological damage and systemic inflammatory response and is associated with a much better long-term prognosis.

Until now, out of hospital, stirred ice water baths, intravenous ice-cold saline or pre-chilled pads have produced the most rapid rates of cooling. CAERvest® is the first portable, immediately active, powerful and easy-to-use device that can achieve the required depth and extent of cooling needed to treat heat stroke and, crucially, doesn’t interfere with other treatment that may be needed.

CAERvest® from Bodychillz is CE certified and is currently being evaluated by medical staff in the military, healthcare and sports sectors and by a number of medical facilities in the US, UK and Australia. The device is intended to form part of every paramedic kit and be used by qualified personnel and first responders attending call outs. It can be incorporated into standard resuscitation protocols and be carried in an emergency vehicle, cooling smoothly and continuously for at least an hour without needing any attention from the crew. The device presents no fluid challenge to the heart and allows both CPR and defibrillation to take place.

CAERvest® is single use to minimise infection, is easily transportable, cools the body and enables temperature management to commence even before there is return of spontaneous circulation.

Dr Rowley Cottingham, Medical Director and Consultant in Emergency Medicine at the Brighton Major Trauma Centre and BASICS responder, explains how the device was conceived, “I had been concerned for some time that there was a gap in our care for patients with cardiac arrest. Numerous studies had shown that patients did better if they were cooled after a return of spontaneous circulation as the cooling seemed to reduce or even abolish hypoxic brain damage. It was clear that the sooner this happened, the better, but it was very difficult to do this safely, inexpensively and quickly. Various forms of cooling liquids, pre-refrigerated packs and pressurised gases were available in attempts to apply such cooling but each requires either expensive kit or preparation or both. I was shown some brilliant advances in instantly activated, unpowered, endothermic cooling. I wanted something better and saw immediately there might be a fit. I was really impressed with the science that they were using and I saw the potential for their technology to answer the question I posed. Even though the science has been around for thousands of years, this was leading edge stuff that was taking it forward for a unique purpose. I joined the team and over the next 18 months we developed the product that is now CAERvest®.”

Dr Cottingham concludes, “Extensive evaluation of the product is already underway in the UK, the US, Australia and the Middle East. CAERvest® is instant in action, effective and safe. With a three- year shelf life it can wait in the vehicle until needed and be ready for action in under a minute. I’m really excited at the prospect that not only will better care be possible but we may even improve understanding of the science.”