Realistic mannequins being used to research 'cooling techniques'

PHOENIX - Record-breaking heat is sending more people to area hospitals.

Sometimes symptoms are so severe, cooling yourself off with water isn't enough.

Doctors at the University of Arizona College of Medicine are practicing cooling techniques on "sim" mannequins.

"We're able to simulate a lot of critical illness symptoms that obviously we'd like to practice on a simulator than we practice on a real patient," explained Dr. Nafis Shamsid-Den, a pulmonary critical care fellow.

The mannequins cost about $80,000 and are as human-like as it gets.

They can cry, shake, and sweat, among many other things.

"It allows us to try multiple, multiple times and get down a technique on a piece of equipment that allows us to make our mistakes here, rather than make those mistakes on live patients," Dr. Shamsid-Den said.

More than 60 deaths in Maricopa County this year are being investigated as heat-related.

If that trend continues, 2017 could be the deadliest on record.

Dr. Shamsid-Den said many hospital visits could be prevented.

"Recognizing those early warning signs, dizziness, fatigue, feeling like you're going to pass out, wooziness," Shamsid-Den said. 

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