Hypothermia - Symptom
Low body temperature; Cold exposure
As people develop hypothermia, their abilities to think and move are often lost slowly. In fact, they may even be unaware that they need emergency treatment. Someone with hypothermia also is likely to have frostbite.
The symptoms include:
- Weakness and loss of coordination
- Pale and cold skin
- Uncontrollable shivering (although at extremely low body temperatures, shivering may stop)
- Slowed breathing or heart rate
Lethargy, cardiac arrest, shock, and coma can set in without prompt treatment. Hypothermia can be fatal.
- Reviewed last on: 1/14/2010
- Jacob L. Heller, MD, MHA, Emergency Medicine, Virginia Mason Medical Center, Seattle, Washington. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
Danzl DF. Accidental hypothermia. In: Marx JA, Hockberger RS, Walls RM, eds. Rosenâ€™s Emergency Medicine: Concepts and Clinical Practice. 7th ed. St. Louis, Mo: Mosby; 2009:chap 138.
Bessen HA. Hypothermia. In: Tintinalli JE, Kelen GD, Stapczynski JS, Ma OJ, Cline DM, eds. Emergency Medicine: A Comprehensive Study Guide. 6th ed. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill; 2004:chap 192.
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