Heatstroke: Symptoms & Signs

Medically Reviewed on 5/5/2021

Heatstroke refers to the most severe form of heat-related illness that occurs when the body's system for temperature regulation has failed. It is more severe than heat exhaustion or dehydration.

Signs and symptoms begin with symptoms of heat exhaustion and include

These symptoms and signs can progress to those of heatstroke, involving seizures, confusion, and lethargy. With heatstroke, the body temperature can exceed 106 F (41 C) and sweating stops. Heatstroke is a life-threatening condition that requires emergency medical attention.

Causes of heatstroke

Prolonged exposure to high temperatures or physical exertion in high temperatures causes heatstroke.

Other heatstroke symptoms and signs

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References
Jameson, J. Larry, et al. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 20th Ed. New York: McGraw-Hill Education, 2018.