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Symptoms, diagnosis and causes of heat exhaustion

Symptoms, diagnosis and causes of heat exhaustion

Symptoms, diagnosis and causes of heat exhaustion

Symptoms, diagnosis and causes of heat exhaustion

Submit a request for further information, a quotation or indicative cost. Your enquiry will be forwarded to up to 3 private healthcare providers. They will respond directly with further information.

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Heat exhaustion is caused by prolonged exposure to hot weather and characterized by non-specific clinical features. This is a serious condition but not fatal. However if not managed timely, it may progress to a potentially fatal condition called ‘heat stroke’.

Incidence, age and sex

Heat exhaustion is a common occurrence in the general population. It may affect an individual of any age group. However, it is more frequently seen in adults who constantly work in exposed physical environments, especially in hot and humid weather conditions.

Signs and symptoms

The clinical features of heat exhaustion are indistinct and include rapid heart rate, giddiness, tiredness, headache, nausea and even vomiting. The skin of the hands and feet may be cold and clammy and exhibit excessive perspiration. Occasionally, an affected individual may exhibit tremors in the hands. History and a quick clinical examination may be sufficient to diagnose the condition. However, the doctor may conduct some investigations to rule out other ailments which exhibit similar symptoms. Such ailments include acute coronary syndrome, vasovagal attack and hypoglycaemia.

Causes and prevention

Heat exhaustion is a clinical condition which results from the imbalance of water and electrolytes in one’s body. This is induced by exposure to hot environmental conditions. Physical exertion in such conditions may aggravate the chances of heat exhaustion. Individuals, who are on diuretic medication, have increased water and salt loss from body. Thus, they need to be extra careful while performing any strenuous physical activity.

Complications

Heat exhaustion is a serious condition which may progress to a potentially fatal condition called ‘heat stroke’ which is characterised by mental confusion. Moreover, individuals with heat exhaustion may also experience fainting episode, called as ‘heat syncope’. Very rarely can heat exhaustion lead to coma.

Submit a request for further information, a quotation or indicative cost. Your enquiry will be forwarded to up to 3 private healthcare providers. They will respond directly with further information.

Get a quote for heat exhaustion treatment >

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