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- Patient Comments: Heat Cramps - Causes
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- Heat cramps facts
- What are heat cramps?
- Who is at risk for heat cramps?
- What causes heat cramps?
- What are the signs and symptoms of heat cramps?
- When should an individual seek medical care for heat cramps?
- How are heat cramps diagnosed?
- What first aid treatments can help heat cramps?
- What are the complications of heat cramps?
- How can heat cramps be prevented?
- What is the prognosis for heat cramps?
What first aid treatments can help heat cramps?
Most first aid treatment for heat cramps can occur before seeking medical care:
- stop the activity being performed,
- get to a cooler place,
- drink plenty of fluids, and
- gently stretch the muscles that are cramping.
At the health care professional's office or a hospital, medical care focuses on symptom relief.
It makes it difficult to replace body fluids if the patient has nausea or vomiting, so intravenous fluids may be administered. Anti-nausea medications like promethazine (Phenergan), prochlorperazine (Compazine), droperidol (Inapsine), or ondansetron (Zofran) may be used to control those symptoms.
Painful muscles may be treated with over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications, such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, Nuprin, and others) or naproxen (Aleve, Anaprox, Naprosyn, Naprelan). Though it is a non-prescription medication, it is important to remember that there may side effects or interactions with prescription medications. When you are not certain which medication to consider, consult your health care professional or pharmacist as a helpful information resource.
What are the complications of heat cramps?
There are few long-term consequences of heat cramps, however, once a person experiences heat cramps, they may be at risk for future episodes.