Prevention, Recognition and Treatment.
Articles, Protocols and Research on
treatment of hypothermia in the field is
core rewarming to
prevent post-rescue collapse.
"No previously healthy
person should die of hypothermia after
they have been rescued and treatment has been started."
Cameron C. Bangs, M.D. The Mountaineers 1986.
The fundamental questions are simple:
1. If effective treatment technology had been available,
would an individual have survived ?
2. Are a significant number of people dying because attending personnel are not
or not equipped with current technology ?
3. If a hypothermic victim is alive when rescued but dies during recovery, and there is no
other significant trauma or disease, does this suggest that death may have resulted
i) inappropriate or ineffective treatment,
ii) no treatment at all ?
Although no accurate statistics are
available, one cannot fail to be concerned by the mortality rate in the post-rescue period.
It has been stated that there is no longer any
excuse for hypothermia deaths; the knowledge and the technology needed to cope with
hypothermia exist, so that treatment is now a matter of preparedness with the application
of up-to-date techniques and equipment.
have an important role in the first aid medical treatment of victims"
World Congress on Drowning
hypothermia starts in
the field. Many rescuers and first-aid providers do not have equipment to
rewarming with warm, humidified oxygen, and warm IV-fluids, although these methods should
be initiated to help prevent (core) temperature afterdrop". for
more information on treatment RES-Q-AIR
and Article: (Journal of the American Medical
Many hypothermia cases can be successfully
treated, providing that treatment starts immediately upon rescue and is continued during
transportation to a medical facility.
What is the major injury rescue specialists face?
"Without a doubt hypothermia" says Bob
Ayres, Canadian Coast Guard Rescue Specialist Coordinator " . . .
due to the
cold waters on our coast we have adapted specialized equipment, including inhalation
rewarming units known as the
to stabilize and begin warming in the field".
Saving lives since 1983
Equipment for Treatment of Hypothermia
RES-Q-AIR Model Ht 1000
Hypothermia treatment, described in
many current protocols such as the State of Alaska Cold Injuries
Guidelines (Revised 1/2005) recommend that heated 108°F (42°C) and
humidified oxygen or air should be administered
The RES-Q-AIR ® is a non-invasive
Core Rewarming System, going right to the heart of the problem for
hypothermia and trauma victims thermally stabilizing the
"critical" core temperature in the field and during
transportation en-route to the hospital.
* Pre-hospital stabilization: Continued
cooling if not arrested, can lead to ventricular fibrillation of the
heart. Preventing cardiac dysrhythmias must be the highest priority,
patients with a temperature below 30°C or 80°F, may not respond to
defibrillation, thermally stabilizing a patient is necessary to
prevent cardiac complications.
* Core rewarming is a very effective
treatment for all levels of hypothermia, available to rescuers,
paramedics and first responders to thermally stabilize the
"critical" core temperature with rewarming in the field.
* Inhalation rewarming is a simple,
safe, non-invasive treatment suitable for active core rewarming in the
field, donating heat directly to the head, neck, and thoracic core
(the critical core) through inhalation of warm water-saturated air or
oxygen. This method also warms the hypothalemus, the temperature
regulation center, the respiratory center, and the cardiac center at
the base of the brainstem, this rewarming of the central nervous
system at the brainstem reverses the cold-induced depression of the
respiratory centers and improves the level of consciousness.
"Truly the most
significant hypothermia rescue tool designed to date."
(Andrew D Weinberg, MD)
Model 3000 Intravenous Fluid Warmer (FDA Registered)
of the advantages of warmed IV Fluids at normal body temperature
is the improved absorption of
administered medications (+/- 10% per degree F compared to cold IV
fluids) Cold IV fluids may induce hypothermia in compromised
patients and those that are predisposed to hypothermia, for
- further cooling of hypothermic patients
- cooling of traumatized patients (slowed
metabolic heat production)
- cooling of geriatric patients (poor
circulation, slowed metabolism) - diabetic patients
- cooling of pediatric patients (small body
- cooling of burn victims
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