Jefferson University Hospitals

Dehydration & Heat Stroke

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Heat stroke is a life-threatening condition. Seek emergency medical attention immediately. Symptoms include warm, red dry skin; lack of sweating; disorientation; and unconsciousness. Get out of the sun and immediately begin to cool the body by spraying water, applying cold wet towels and fanning.

Dehydration is an abnormal depletion of body fluids due to excessive heat and/or prolonged exposure to the hot sun. The body loses water content and essential body salts such as sodium, potassium, calcium bicarbonate and phosphate.

Children adjust more slowly than adults to changes in environmental heat. They also produce more heat with activity than adults and sweat less. Sweating is one of the body's normal cooling mechanisms.

If you or your child has a suspected heat stroke, you can access emergency medical care at Jefferson's Department of Emergency Medicine. We offer world-class emergency services 24 hours a day, seven days a week at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Center City and Methodist Hospital in South Philadelphia.

Both Hospitals' Emergency Departments are staffed by attending and resident physicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, nurses, technicians and staff specially trained in emergency medicine.