Anti fever drugs will not reduce fever in patient with heat stroke
Over 1,000 people have died across India because of heat stroke. Heat stroke is a medical emergency and deaths can be prevented if treatment is started early. The commonest mistake done in treating patient with high fever due to heat stroke is giving anti fever medicine and waiting for it to respond, said Padma Shri Awardee, Dr A Marthanda Pillai, National President, IMA and Padma Shri Awardee, Dr K K Aggarwal, Hony. Secretary General, IMA.
The only treatment of very high fever in cases of heat stroke is rapid reduction of body temperature by physical means.
Rapid reduction in body temperature can be accomplished by cool or tepid ( 20 degree centigrade) , no cold, bathing preferably using damp sponges. Submersion should be avoided so that body heat loss by evaporation can occur.
Alcohol aids nothing to tepid water sponges. Cooling blankets should also be avoided.
In heat stroke the core body temperature is usually more than 40 degree centigrade and patient rapidly developed altered mental status. If not treated in time most patient died of multi organ failure.
The difference between heat exhaustion and heat stroke is presence of sweating in heat exhaustion, added Dr Aggarwal. Till the armpits are wet patient is in heat exhaustion and not heat stroke.