London: Doctors at a London hospital have saved the life of a new born baby by "freezing" him for four days.
Edward Ives was born with just a five percent chance of survival due to a condition called supraventricular tachycardia (SVT), which causes the heart to race dangerously fast.
But thanks to a pioneering treatment at University College London Hospital, in which doctors dropped his core temperature by almost four degrees Centigrade, he has survived, the Telegraph reported.
When Ives was born last August his heart was pumping at over 300 beats per minute, double the normal rate of 160.
Doctors wrapped the boy in a blanket of cold gel which dropped his temperature from 37C to 33.3C, to slow his metabolism, to prevent damage to vital organs such as the brain.
After two days they slowly raised his temperature - but his heart rate rose again so they chilled him for a further two days.
His mother Claire, 29, said that it was horrible to see him lying there freezing in nothing but a nappy.
"He was heavily sedated so didn't move much, and he was cold to touch - it looked like he was dead. All I wanted to do was scoop him up and give him a warm cuddle. I just had to keep reminding myself that it was saving his life," she said.
During his treatment Ives also received shocks from a defibrillator five times, to return his heart from a potentially fatal rhythm to a safer one.
On the fourth day his heart started slowing to more normal levels, after which the medics slowly increased the temperature by one degree every 24 hours.
A month later she and her husband Phillip were finally allowed to take him home. Ives is now a happy six-month-old.