Heat stroke is the most serious heat-related illness. It occurs when
the body becomes unable to control its temperature: the body's
temperature rises rapidly, the sweating mechanism fails, and the body is
unable to cool down. When heat stroke occurs, the body temperature can
rise to 106°F or higher within 10 to 15 minutes. Heat stroke can cause
death or permanent disability if emergency treatment is not given.
Symptoms of heat stroke include:
Take the following steps to treat a worker with heat stroke:
Heat exhaustion is the body's response to an excessive loss of the
water and salt, usually through excessive sweating. Workers most prone
to heat exhaustion are those that are elderly, have high blood pressure,
and those working in a hot environment.
Symptoms of heat exhaustion include:
Treat a worker suffering from heat exhaustion with the following:
Rhabdomyolysis is a medical condition associated with heat stress and
prolonged physical exertion, resulting in the rapid breakdown, rupture,
and death of muscle. When muscle tissue dies, electrolytes and large
proteins are released into the bloodstream that can cause irregular
heart rhythms and seizures, and damage the kidneys.
Symptoms of rhabdomyolysis include:
Workers with symptoms of rhabdomyolysis should:
Heat syncope is a fainting (syncope) episode or dizziness that
usually occurs with prolonged standing or sudden rising from a sitting
or lying position. Factors that may contribute to heat syncope include
dehydration and lack of acclimatization.
Symptoms of heat syncope include:
Workers with heat syncope should:
Heat cramps usually affect workers who sweat a lot during strenuous
activity. This sweating depletes the body's salt and moisture levels.
Low salt levels in muscles causes painful cramps. Heat cramps may also
be a symptom of heat exhaustion.
Workers with heat cramps should:
Heat rash is a skin irritation caused by excessive sweating during hot, humid weather.
Symptoms of heat rash include:
Workers experiencing heat rash should: