Patient Comments: Heat Stroke - Experience and Preventive

Question:Describe your experience with heat stroke, and could it have been prevented?

Comment from: Mark H, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: November 20

I broke the end of the tibia and slightly up the fibula with my foot turned the wrong angle when I fell back on it from about 1 foot high. This was a task I've done thousands of time before with no problems.

Comment from: Manda, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: November 22

I experienced heat stroke this last summer while on a mission trip in Mexico where we built a house. On the specific day we got to the work site around 7AM and I spent the next 3 hours tacking black tar paper to the side of the house while the sun beat down, hitting the black paper and intensifying the heat. Around 10 we took a break to regroup and I noticed my eyes weren't focusing correctly and my mouth was super dry. I decided to sit down and take a 5 minute break. When the time came to get up and start working again I couldn't move and I could only barely mumble in response, and it took a lot of effort to get that mumble! I was carried to our van, water poured over me and the AC was turned on. Luckily we had medical staff on the trip with us so I was able to be taken care of. It took 4 hours, 1 full Nalgene bottle of saline water, one bottle of water and 4 bottles of Gatorade for me to get full movement back in me body. I felt sick, shaky and dizzy for days afterwards. When I returned home I consulted with my doctor and it was determined a medication I was taking, a beta blocker, contributed to the heat stroke. There were definitely signs of heat exhaustion first though and I wish I would have paid attention to them instead of pushing through.

Published: August 02

My brother-in-law passed away on July 23rd from a heat stroke. No one around him realized what was happening; he was hallucinating, stumbling around, acting like he was drunk or something. Everyone left the house and a few hours later he was found and taken to the hospital, where he died several hours later. DO NOT ASSUME ANYTHING! If you have symptoms of a heat stroke, get to the ER immediately! And watch out for loved ones, stay inside, out of the heat, make sure they have plenty of water!

Comment from: turtleg, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: July 29

One day in summer I was at a nursery buying some flowers for my back yard. It was very hot and the humidity was around 95%. I felt a little dizzy, but didn't think a lot about it, because I use to have low blood pressure. When I came home and planted the flowers, the dizziness got stronger and I felt like passing out. I went in, laid down on the couch and drunk some cold water, when I got all of a sudden extreme headache and a skin rush, but my skin felt dry and didn't sweat at all. It was like a panic attack that tightened my chest and I had to vomit. With my last strength I crawled to the bathroom but couldn't reach the toilet any more. Everything blacked out around me and I heard loud noises in my ears. I had spastic cramps in my extremities and was unable to move. My vision was blurred and I seriously thought, this is it, I wasn't going to make it. I probably laid there for several hours until I could get back to the couch. I wasn't even able to call 911 because my hands were in a weird spastic position and I couldn't move them. The next day I still had strong symptoms of headache, dizziness, loud noises in my ears and a very limited vision. I drove myself to a doctor, who thought I had a brain aneurysm and sent me immediately to get an MRI. It turned out fine, but I didn't feel better at all for another week. After a week, my vision came back and the headache and dizziness disappeared. Today I know I had a full blown heat stroke and could have died, but the doctor was not even considering this possibility and had no clue, what caused my symptoms.

Comment from: Feeling crappy, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: May 19

Well, l was told l have acute bronchitis and like the rest of you all over the board with what to take and what to do. I am losing sleep and getting frustrated. I have antibiotics and inhaler Robitussin (but not working fast enough for me). This really takes the punch out of your daily routine. I hope we all feel better soon.

Comment from: Father in need, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: December 15

I have a broken tooth that got infected 2 days ago and now the left side of my face is swollen, my left eye is swollen shut. I need help, I already went to the emergency room and got antibiotics and pain killers and it is getting worse.

Comment from: SuzyQ666, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: October 22

Well over a year ago, (May '12) I was taken to the local emergency room by the paramedics who were called in by my manicurist and another woman in the hair salon. It was an inordinately hot day, I had had little or nothing to eat, yet had been drinking a sufficient amount of water. So I thought. Anyway, I was kept at the hospital (after spending all afternoon in the emergency room getting MRIs on what seemed to be my entire body) overnight and had an IV pumping fluids into me. A young neurologist who saw me in the emergency room said I'd suffered a TIA (transient ischemic attack), while my personal physician felt the more likely situation was that I'd had heat exhaustion and dehydration. (There was no evidence of a clot or leaking blood vessel.) I left the hospital after about a 24 hour stay and drove home. I don't know if I'll ever know for sure whether I'd had heat exhaustion, heat stroke, or a TIA. All I know is that I was wide awake the entire night, unable to sleep. When I was discharged, I was given a packet about stroke, had a visit from a social worker and more information than answers.

Patient Comments

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Heat Stroke - Risk Question: If you or a relative had a heat stroke, were either of you at risk? If you are at risk, in what ways will you try to prevent an occurrence?
Heat Stroke - Treatment Question: Describe the medical treatment you received when you suffered a heat stroke.
Heat Stroke - Symptoms Question: If you, a relative, or friend had a heat stroke, what were the symptoms?
Heat Stroke - Experience Question: Please share your experience with heat stroke.

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