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Cooling newborn babies that have suffered a lack of oxygen at birth significantly increases their chance of survival without brain damage through into later childhood.

Oxygen deprivation at birth is known to set off processes that can lead to the death of brain cells and permanent neurological damage. Cooling the babies interrupts these processes to reduce brain injury.

An Oxford University and Imperial College London study has found that 51.7% of oxygen-deprived babies treated with hypothermia survived to age 6–7 years with a normal IQ, compared to 39.4% of those who just received standard care.

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