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Wis Med J. 1997 May;96(5):39-41.

Epidemic heat stroke in a midwest community: risk factors, neurological complications and sequelae.

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  • 1Neurology Department, University of Wisconsin Medical School-Madison, USA.

Abstract

We studied the admission rate, risk factors, neurological complications and sequelae of heat stroke (HS) during the 1995 heat wave in Madison, Wisconsin. HS was epidemic in 1995 (2.3 cases/1000 admissions), compared to the ten-fold lower endemic rate in 1994 (0.2/ 1000). There were 11 cases of HS, 9 males and 2 females. Contributing factors were athletic events (2), working outdoors (3) and indoor activity with malfunctioning air-conditioning (6). Medical conditions contributing to poor temperature regulation included schizophrenia with neuroleptic treatment (2), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis receiving nortriptiline (1), multiple sclerosis (1), attention deficit disorder (1), cystic fibrosis (1) and alcoholism (1). Acute neurological complications occurred in all patients on presentation including coma (8/11.73%), stupor (2/ 11.18%) and seizures (1/11.9%). Two patients (1856) had persistent neurological sequelae in the form of a pan-cerebellar syndrome while the remaining 9 recovered fully. Importantly, avoidable factors contributed to all of the patients with underlying diseases. These patients are particularly at risk and should take adequate precautions during summer months.

PMID:
9167437
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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