Boy Survives After 25 Minutes Underwater, Rescued by 12-Year-Old Girl

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"A number of studies have shown that hypothermia -- reduced body temperature -- is highly protective of the brain when it is starved for oxygen and blood flow," Abella said. "The water that bathed him was certainly quite cold, and its likely that his core body temperature dropped during his cardiac arrest event."

Abella said Ostrander's age and overall health may have also factors in his survival.

"There have been a number of reported cases where people have been rescued from icy water and restored to health," he said. "These cases are not common, but they aren't as rare as one might think."

On Tuesday, the blog was updated again with a report that Ostrander continues to make progress.

"This morning at 8 o'clock, he said 'morning' to his parents," reads the blog. "He kept trying to get out of bed. When his dad told him that he can't get out of bed, he said very emphatically, "Yes I can!" Dale's dad says that Dale is answering "yes" and "no" questions. He is also following voices with his eyes. The day nurse is quite amazed at the progress made!"

Despite the amazing survival story, doctors have cautioned the Ostranders that their son faces a difficult road ahead of physical therapy, and could have permanent brain damage.

The physicians "were very clear that he had been under for too long, had been without oxygen for too long," Kirsten Ostrander said, adding, "We trust (God) no matter what.

"If he chooses to take Dale to heaven, and if he still chooses that, then he's still good," she said. "And if he chooses to bless us and give us back our son, he's still good."

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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