Accidental Hypothermia and Cold Injury



  • The clinical features of hypothermia vary among patients and core temperatures are often unreliable; therefore, prompt recognition of each stage of hypothermia is crucial in its management.

  • Gentle handling of the patient is paramount since manipulation can precipitate arrhythmias in the irritable myocardium.

  • With failure to rewarm a clinician should consider underlying sepsis or non-infectious causes of impaired thermogenesis.

  • With regard to frostbite rewarming is an essential component of therapy but should be delayed until definitive care is imminent since refreezing following rewarming results in worsening tissue damage.


Core Temperature Chest Compression Core Body Temperature Cold Injury Arachidonic Acid Cascade 


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Copyright information

© Springer India 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Emergency DepartmentStanger Provincial HospitalDurbanSouth Africa
  2. 2.Department of Emergency MedicineNelson R Mandela School of Medicine, University of Kwa-Zulu NatalDurbanSouth Africa

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