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What are heat stroke symptoms and signs?

Symptoms of heat stroke can sometimes mimic those of heart attack or other conditions. Sometimes a person experiences symptoms of heat exhaustion before progressing to heat strokes.

Signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion include:

  • nausea,
  • vomiting,
  • fatigue,
  • weakness,
  • headache,
  • muscle cramps and aches, and
  • dizziness.

However, some individuals can develop symptoms of heat stroke suddenly and rapidly without warning.

Different people may have different symptoms and signs of heatstroke. Common symptoms and signs of heat stroke include:

  • high body temperature,
  • the absence of sweating, with hot red or flushed dry skin,
  • rapid pulse,
  • difficulty breathing,
  • strange behavior,
  • hallucinations,
  • confusion,
  • agitation,
  • disorientation,
  • seizure, and/or
  • coma.
Return to Heat Stroke

See what others are saying

Comment from: 21, Female (Patient) Published: July 05

I was working all day in the hot, humid weather. We are just starting to have super high temperatures lately so I haven't quite gotten used to it yet (apparently). I started off dripping with sweat, which is normal for such weather so I didn't think anything of it. I also felt like it was such an effort to move my limbs in the heat. I found that my arms were getting really weak and so I sat down on the floor. I collapsed and couldn't sit up or really move my arms or legs. I felt really wobbly and started shaking a little. For some odd reason, I started crying hysterically. I was perfectly fine emotionally though, so this was very confusing to me. My body was just acting crazy and I felt trapped on the floor, shaking, crying, and weak. I couldn't pull myself up and I was very lightheaded. My body was very sweaty as well and it got increasingly warm. Luckily, my mom was home and helped get me water and cold washcloths. That has helped a lot. Not sure if the wobbly feeling is related but salty food helped me on that end.

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Comment from: horse, Published: June 12

My symptoms developed over a period of time. We went hiking in the dessert, got lost, and were out for three hours with no water. I only weigh 100 pounds. It started with muscle cramps. I had been sweating like crazy. Next I started to feel nauseous. Then my fingers stopped working. I couldn't hold on to anything. The world started to spin and then I started seeing black and blue spots. I was hiking between adults and I had no one to tell. I got dizzy and started to lose my balance. I fell a lot. When one of my peers caught up to me, I called them the wrong name. I stopped sweating and turned really red. When we got back to camp, I started to hear and see things that weren't really there. I started to shake and got really cold. I was nauseous for the rest of the day and in the mornings for a few days after. I was exhausted and slept every time I sat down and am still easily worn out a month later.

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Comment from: loki5312, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: August 26

My skin got very red, hot and dry because of heat stroke. I wasn't sweating at all, and my heart felt like it was trying to beat out of its chest.

Was this comment helpful?Yes

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