Treating Mild, Moderate & Severe Hypothermia In The Emergency Room: Rewarming Techniques, Active Rewarming | EB Medicine 2016
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Evidence-Based Management Of Accidental Hypothermia In The Emergency Department

January 2016

Abstract

Accidental hypothermia is defined as an unintentional drop in core body temperature below 35°C. It can present in any climate and in any season, as it is not always a result of environmental exposure; underlying illnesses or coexisting pathology can play important roles. Although there is some variability in clinical presentation, hypothermia produces a predictable pattern of physiologic responses and clinical manifestations, and effective treatment has yielded many impressive survival case reports. Treatment strategies focus on prevention of further heat loss, volume resuscitation, implementation of appropriate rewarming techniques, and management of cardiac dysrhythmia. Rewarming may be passive or active and/or internal or external, depending on severity and available resources. This issue focuses on methods of effective rewarming and prevention of further morbidity and mortality.

Key words: accidental hypothermia, core body temperature, rewarming, hypothermic arrest, thermoregulation, J waves, Osborn waves, passive external warming, active external warming, active internal warming, thoracic cavity lavage, cardiopulmonary bypass, extracorporeal rewarming, core afterdrop

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