What are the signs and symptoms of hypothermia?
The signs and symptoms of hypothermia vary depending upon how severe the hypothermia becomes. In general, there is a sequence of symptoms that can be roughly graded as mild, moderate or severe (not all doctors agree with grading or fixed temperatures). However, the following is a list of symptoms that may occur as hypothermia progresses from mild to severe (temperatures are approximate and some symptoms may overlap).
Mild hypothermia symptoms (core temperature 32 C to 35 C (90 F to 95 F) are:
- Increased respiratory rate
- Mild confusion
- Some difficulty with speech and coordination
Moderate hypothermia (core temperature 28 C to 32 C (82 F to 90 F) are:
- Increasing difficulty with all the moderate symptoms (for example, inability to do simple tasks, slurred speech)
Severe hypothermia (core temperature below 28 C (82 F) are:
- Shivering stops
- Extreme confusion (for example, removing clothing or extreme risk-taking behavior)
- A decline in consciousness
- A weak and/or irregular pulse
- Slow and shallow breathing
- Coma that can result in death