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Portable Body Temperature Conditioner

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Annual rept. 19 Sep 2011-18 Sep 2012

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Many patients become hypothermic after severe injury due to environmental exposure during transport. These patients also have decreased thermoregulation due to blood loss. Normal core body temperature is defined as 37oC and core body temperature below 35oC and above 40oC is defined as hypothermia and hyperthermia respectively. Studies have shown much better outcomes for patients with either trauma or hypothermia compared to patients with both trauma and hypothermia. Additionally, studies have shown that decreasing the hyperthermic patient s core body temperature rapidly to 38oC lowers the incidence of complications and the risk of death. Currently, the most effective treatments for dysthermic patients involve active convective heatingcooling devices. However, current devices require heavy or bulky equipment not suitable for military applications. This study focuses on developing a portable in-field, battery operated body temperature conditioning system. The heatingcooling system has been designed to maximize efficiency allowing for a reduction in component and battery weight. Additionally, rechargeable lithium-ion batteries are being utilized to allow for military use during medical evacuations in the absence of a reliable power source. To evaluate the heatingcooling capacity of the device, patient simulation testing will be performed through the use of a thermal manikin. This research will identify specific design improvements to be implemented in a reiterative process, ultimately leading to an efficient portable body temperature conditioning device suitable for military applications.

Subject Categories:

  • Anatomy and Physiology
  • Medicine and Medical Research
  • Stress Physiology

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