The effect of hypothermia on the human body
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Department of Emergency Medical Services, Public Health School, Collegium Medicum, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Poland
Department of Surgery, School of Medicine, Collegium Medicum, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Poland
Small Animal Clinic Białystok, Poland
Paweł Jastrzębski   

Department of Emergency Medical Services, Public Health School University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Żołnierska 14c, 10-900 Olsztyn, Poland.
Submission date: 2021-04-26
Final revision date: 2022-03-11
Acceptance date: 2022-03-11
Online publication date: 2022-04-05
Hypothermia may appear to be a benign condition, but it is an insidious and life-threatening dysfunction of the thermoregulatory system that occurs in all regions of the world, regardless of season. Hypothermia is caused by cooling when core body temperature decreases below 35°C. The information obtained during a patient interview is also helpful in establishing the causes of hypothermia. The pathophysiology of hypothermia has not been fully elucidated to date. It is rarely diagnosed, in particular in the temperate climate. Hypothermia poses a serious challenge for medical personnel, in particular medical rescue teams who arrive first at the scene.

The aim of this study was to present new information concerning hypothermia and the management of this condition.

Material and methods:
This article reviews the available literature and statistical data relating to hypothermia, and it discusses various approaches to managing hypothermia, in particular in pre-hospital care.

Results and discussion:
In homeotherms, significant changes in body temperature affect the functioning of most organs and disrupt homeostasis. According to the European Resuscitation Council, hypothermia is one of the reversible causes of sudden cardiac arrest, which is why hypothermic patients should be adequately managed. Further research is also needed to expand our knowledge about hypothermia.

Hypothermia is an important cause of death particularly in the elderly, infants, and persons suffering from thermoregulatory disorders or diseases that influence thermogenesis. Therefore, education should be continued in this area and clinical studies should be conducted to deepen our understanding of this problem.

No funding.
Authors declare no conflict of interest.
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