Thermoregulatory Dysfunction

  • Hyun-Yoon Ko


Patients with spinal cord injuries may be susceptible to hypothermia or hyperthermia due to significant disturbances in the mechanisms of normal body temperature regulation, but hypothermia is more common (Khan et al. 2007). Patients with cervical cord lesions are in the greatest danger. Patients with spinal cord injuries below the cervical level are at a much lower risk. They have more active voluntary muscles and maintain normal sympathetic activity that subjects to sweating and vasomotor activity below the level of lesion. People with complete tetraplegia are particularly prone to hyperthermia, which is defined as rectal temperature above 101 °F (38.4 °C) due to impaired thermoregulation, and hypothermia defined as rectal temperature below 95 °F (35 °C). Since they often cannot control their body temperature in a narrow range, they often show poikilothermic, so that the body temperature can vary greatly depending on the ambient temperature.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hyun-Yoon Ko
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Rehabilitation MedicineRehabilitation Hospital, Pusan National University Yangsan Hospital, Pusan National University School of MedicineYangsanSouth Korea

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