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Heat stroke facts

  • Heat stroke is a form of hyperthermia in which the body temperature is elevated dramatically.
  • Heat stroke is a medical emergency and can be fatal if not promptly and properly treated.
  • The cause of heat stroke is an elevation in body temperature, often accompanied by dehydration.
  • Symptoms of heat stroke can include
    • confusion,
    • agitation,
    • disorientation,
    • the absence of sweating, and
    • coma.
  • Heat stroke is diagnosed by observation of the symptoms and signs in a person exposed to extreme temperatures.
  • Heat stroke is treated by cooling the victim is a critical step in the treatment of heat stroke. Always notify emergency services immediately if heat stroke is suspected.
  • The most important measures to prevent heat strokes are to avoid becoming dehydrated and to avoid vigorous physical activities in hot and humid weather.
  • Infants, the elderly, athletes, and outdoor workers are the groups at greatest risk for heat stroke.
  • Leaving infants, children, or animals in cars poses a risk for heat stroke. Even in moderate weather, the temperature inside a closed car can reach dangerous levels.
Return to Heat Stroke

See what others are saying

Comment from: Twisti, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: July 09

I suffered from a heat stroke years ago, even passing out and recovered okay. Well, now that I am much older and have multi health issues I don't recover too well. Yesterday (7/7/15) I was cleaning out my apartment and moving things to storage and started feeling horrible. I'd stopped sweating and my face and arms became very red, I was feeling weak, tired, dizzy and shaky, feeling like my blood sugar was low (diabetic) kind of feeling. Then I started getting chills in my arms. The temperature was 98 with heat index of 104. I crept from my storage unit back to the car, turned air on full blast and sat there hoping that I would start feeling a bit better so I would feel safe to drive to the closest fast food place to order an ice water! Well, I made it. I really should have called 911 but I am stubborn I guess. Today I am still feeling weak and shaky and light headed but I am staying inside in air conditioning and drinking water all day. Please have someone take you to the closest hospital or call 911! Heat Stroke can kill you, although this time it didn't. I am very lucky with my health being like it is (heart problems, diabetes, blood clotting disorder and more, and all the medicines I am on). I am going to make sure to be way more careful in the future.

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