24

Diagnosing hypothermia requires a special thermometer, as most over-the-counter thermometers are not accurate below 34.4 °C (93.9 °F). Additionally, local body temperature variations means you need to use a rectal, esophageal or bladder thermometer, which you probably aren't going to want to use in the wild. Even if you had that, there is variation from ...


16

The guidance given to first responders from the Public Safety Training Academy is as follows: Talk - Can you talk them out? Reach - Are they close enough for you to reach, with a branch if necessary? Throw - Do you have a rope or anything you can throw? This can include flotation devices - even if you don't have a rope this increases the likelihood of ...


15

Between the moderate hypothermia stage it has been noted that a body will trick your senses into thinking it is burning up. So you naturally begin to strip. Here is a more direct answer from Survivaltopics.com A funny thing happens to people when they get hypothermia. Many of them strip off their clothes as one of their last acts before they die. This ...


15

I am not a doctor, so I can only repeat what I think I understood from lectures by those that do have medical training. I'm pretty sure I remember Dr Murray Hamlett (I highly recommend attending one of his lectures, if he's still doing them. He is not only a leader and pioneer in cold weather medicine, but also a very good and engaging speaker.) saying to ...


13

This is a great question. There are many different kinds of measuring body temperature, from oral/anal digitals, temporal/infrared digitals, glass, strips, non-contact infrared, and ear thermometers. First off, any battery-operated thermometer is useless when the batteries run out. This can happen when the batteries wear down, but it can also happen when ...


13

Here are the basic signs of Hypothermia Shivering. May start off mildly and go severe General apathy and sudden exhaustion Losing coordination (can't tie a knot, etc) Loss of concentration Sudden irrational behavior Unable to speak correctly (slurred speech, dropping words) Edit per comments Final stages: Shivering can stop and subject can feel too warm ...


13

You could do a lot worse than strip them and get in a sleeping bag with them, and indeed this used to be instructed as standard first aid for hypothermia. However, as far as I'm aware this has now changed and the recommended approach is to construct a 1 person thermal burrito / hyper-wrap. It's done as follows (content taken from the alpine institute blog!) ...


12

Sirex & Rory have covered getting them out of the water pretty well, but given that getting them out of the water in the first place might be no small feat, you're right in understanding that you're far from out-of-the-woods, so to speak, even after they're out. Getting the victim warmed up is paramount, and their wet clothes are going to be a serious ...


12

First, this answer is not a substitute for proper training. I recommend taking a class in Wilderness First Aid or higher to be better prepared for things like treating hypothermic people. Second, hypothermia is a term that tends to have different connotations with different people. Sometimes what people call "hypothermia" is just a very cold individual, or ...


11

Because swimming takes energy that your body could be using for heat and instead uses it for movement. The more energy you use in cold water, the more your body cools off. If you cannot climb out of the water, conserve body heat by remaining as still as possible and reducing the amount of your body exposed to the water. Protect your critical heat loss ...


10

Never allow them to sleep. Even if hypothermia is not that severe. I'm talking from a personal experience where two fellow trekkers died due this. The reason is when you go the sleep, your breathing slows down due to low heart rate. Our body is meant to behave so. This means the blood flow slows down. And with a mild/severe hypothermia, you are in a state ...


10

When treating mild to medium hypothermia, you should: Stop. Create a heat source, such as a fire and get the patient warm. take wet clothing off. The best way to do this if you don't have other clothes to change into, is to take off your underwear/under layers and dry those first, then when those layers are dry, swap them out. Eat calories, i.e. ...


9

Admittedly, my first aid training has lapsed - but the last mountain first aid course I took about 5 years ago made a point of matching the speed of onset. For example - if a person has fallen into an icy stream, they will have very rapidly cooled. You need to get their core temperature up, fast - the best way to do this is to strip them down out of their ...


8

I would like to add to berry120's answer with my own. I thought of suggesting this as an edit but thought adding an answer was more appropriate. What he said is correct, however I think it is important to mention a few things. If you are treating someone in this fashion, they most likely have severe hypothermia where they are no longer shivering and are ...


8

I try to address the situation you are asking about, even though I think you already did a good job so this may not be overly helpful/new. Additionally in one of your referenced answers that is actually about rescuing someone out of the water, there is already a great answer by D.Lambert on what to do after rescuing, so my answer will overlap greatly (I ...


7

It's not that bad. First of all, distinguish between hypothermia and frostbite. The latter is when your flesh actually freezes. Water crystals do a lot of damage. It is extremely painful when thawing. If you get cold enough for numbness to set in, that too will be painful on warming. Hypothermia, not so much. First symptoms: The 'umbles: Stumble, ...


7

I've been in the early stages of hypothermia before, and I can tell you from experience that when you're in the early stages of hypothermia, you're convinced you're okay and that nothing is wrong; as in shivering and shaking uncontrollably while trying to convince the people around you, "Oh I'm fine, I don't feel cold at all I don't know why I'm shaking so ...


7

It would not be wise to take a leaking inflatable sleeping pad on any trip where you actually need a sleeping pad, and cannot hike out and replace it easily. The pad is already leaking. You have to weigh the probability and consequences of the leak getting worse, maybe much worse, on your Alaska trip vs the cost of replacing the pad now. Hypothermia at ...


6

I've never had this happen fortunately, but I'd imagine it would depend on a few factors. Namely: How cold the water is. What gear they are carrying that prevents them swimming? How muddy the bank / lake bed is - will you get stuck if you enter or approach the water? I'd personally consider going in after someone just about the last option, and even then ...


6

I would take two things into consideration, or rather mention two things that are in consideration: Providing a pleasant, agreeable, and accommodating-as-possible response to someone who is suffering. Doing what will provide the best chances of saving a person's life. American culture at least is squeamish about violating principle #1, enough so that ...


6

You actually don't need to go outdoors to get struck by Hypothermia. But you can suffer from it on a trek where you don't have a proper campsite, camping equipment, or good clothing and bedding. From http://www.globalaging.org/health/us/hypothermia.htm The most important step in treating hypothermia is to make and then keep a person warm and dry. He/...


6

Hypothermia is likely the least of your problems after an involuntary dip into icy water. Drowning and cardiac arrest are the killers here. Read these, and maybe watch the videos. It's all good stuff, and difficult to summarise. http://beyondcoldwaterbootcamp.com/4-phases-of-cold-water-immersion http://beyondcoldwaterbootcamp.com/en/rescue-a-treatment ...


6

Here's one study: http://www.eisberg.narod.ru/Ch17-ColdWaterImmersion.pdf And a couple of snippets, the first showing how water cools faster than air. In this test with 10degC water, subject's core temperature was still over 36degC after approx 40 minutes. ...and the second showing effect of different clothing. In this test with 10degC water, subject (...


6

Most backpacking sleeping pads are insulated, some are even down-filled. When they're deflated they lose a lot of their insulating properties. This can be detrimental in cold weather, because when you're laying down most of your heat loss is by conduction through the ground. If you take your mattress to go camping in the cold, it will give you cold spots if ...


6

From how it sounds, the river is too deep to walk through. I strongly advise against trying to swim through it in winter - if you are not well trained, well equipped and know the river very well, this is very likely deadly. Also, I advise against using some makeshift equipment or a blow-up raft. The river will likely become deadly after an earthquake strong ...


5

My copy of Buck Tilton's Wilderness First Responder notes that for cold water immersion, aside from providing standard treatment for hypothermia, the patient should be "handled gently, lifted from the water, and kept in a horizontal position". Dry them off, and insulate them from further cold before you think about building a fire. (The reason behind ...


4

Disclaimer: Despite a comment I made earlier about how I too would like to hear about ways to test for hypothermia, I should stress that relying on this could be potentially dangerous and should be a last line of defense, not first. That is, always assume that you could be even if your test is negative, instead of assuming that you are not until it is ...


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