Monday, December 13, 2004


Rabidly Brilliant

Congrats to the doctors at the Children's Hospital of Wisconsin for doing what had normally been considered impossible: they saved a rabies victim who had passed the point of no return; i.e. past the point where a vaccination would help.

How did they do it?

The disease had progressed to a point where immunisation was not an option, so a team of eight specialists decided to try something new: coma-inducing drugs to protect the teenager's brain and a cocktail of drugs to protect her nervous system and boost her immune system.

The goal was to protect her brain while the virus ran its course through her body, said Rodney Willoughby, the paediatric infectious disease physician who headed the care team.