A method for selective brain cooling by profound hemodilution with cold Ringer's lactate solution was previously reported in 1992. We recently modified this technique by combining it with an ultrafiltration and rewarming circuit between the left jugular vein and the inferior vena cava. We used 12 beagle dogs to study the efficacy of selective cerebral hypothermia induced by this modified technique. The brain temperature decreased to 28 degrees C within 5.4 +/- 2.7 minutes and to 20 degrees C within 15.5 +/- 9.4 minutes. The lowest brain and rectal temperatures were 17.0 +/- 1.8 degrees C and 32.1 +/- 2.2 degrees C, respectively. All animals survived in good condition without evidence of neurological deficits until they were killed at 10 weeks. Histological examination of the brains with 2,3,5-triphenyltetrazolim chloride demonstrated no evidence of ischemic lesions, and even in the hippocampus, there was no evidence of ischemic neuronal damage.