Fast Five Quiz: Are You Familiar With Key Elements Regarding Heat Stroke?

Richard H. Sinert, DO


August 02, 2017

Indicators of poor prognosis during acute episodes include the following:

  • Initial temperature measurement higher than 106°F or a temperature higher than 108°F or a temperature persisting above 102°F despite aggressive cooling measures

  • Coma duration longer than 2 hours

  • Severe pulmonary edema

  • Delayed or prolonged hypotension

  • Lactic acidosis in patients with classic heat stroke

  • Acute kidney injury and hyperkalemia

  • Aminotransferase levels greater > 1000 IU/L during the first 24 hours

Morbidity and mortality from heat stroke are related to the duration of the temperature elevation. When therapy is delayed, the mortality rate may be as high as 80%; however, with early diagnosis and immediate cooling, the mortality rate can be reduced to 10%. Mortality is highest among elderly persons, patients with preexisting disease, those confined to bed, and those who are socially isolated.

For more on the prognosis of heat stroke, read here.


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