London: A British woman whose heart stopped beating for six hours has been brought back to life in what doctors have described as an “exceptional case”, it was reported on Friday.
Audrey Schoeman, 34, developed severe hypothermia when she was caught in a snowstorm while hiking in the Spanish Pyrenees with her husband in November, the BBC reported.
Schoeman, who lives in Barcelona, began having trouble speaking and moving during severe weather in the Pyrenees, later falling unconscious.
Her condition worsened while waiting for emergency services and her husband Rohan believed she was dead.
When the rescue team arrived about two hours later, Schoeman’s body temperature had fallen and after arriving at Barcelona’s Vall d’Hebron Hospital, she had no vital signs.
But the low mountain temperatures which made Schoeman ill also helped to save her life, her doctor Eduard Argudo said.
Hypothermia had protected her body and brain from deteriorating while unconscious, he said, despite also bringing her to the brink of death.
He added that that it was the longest cardiac arrest ever recorded in Spain.