Heatstrokes – Always A Medical Emergency


As the summer months approach and temperatures rise, safety and health need top consideration. Even with the best home first aid, heatstroke always constitutes a medical emergency. Knowing the signs of heatstroke and what to do while waiting for emergency care to arrive does well in preventing further complications and securing quick treatment.


What is Heatstroke?

In high temperatures, victims of heatstroke lose the ability to regulate their own body temperature. Often, this number reaches as high as 104 degrees Fahrenheit, and even higher, resulting in damage to vital organs and eventual death if treatment is not swiftly administered. Heatstroke worsens in a very short time, its symptoms including:


  • Convulsions or seizures.
  • Difficulties breathing.
  • Loss of awareness.
  • Intense sweating.
  • Increased heart rate.
  • Sudden aggression and anxiety.
  • Dryness and redness of the skin.
  • Excessive vomiting, accompanied by diarrhea.


Call 911 if you or someone you care for experiences the listed symptoms. While waiting for medical assistance, follow these steps:


  • Completely remove the heatstroke victim from sunlight, placing him or her in a cooler setting.
  • Prevent the person supervised from lying on his or her back. Reposition him or her to lie on the side to maintain an open airway and expose as much skin to the air as possible. Increasing opportunities to cool down is crucial at this point.
  • Attempt to cool the person’s body by fanning, spraying cool water, and/or applying ice packs to as many body parts possible. Refrain from administering fever-reducing medications to lower the person’s temperature, as they often worsen the problem given the body’s inability to properly function.
  • Allow the person to drink water, making sure he or she does not choke on any fluids.


Detection and supervision are key elements to treating heatstroke before it worsens. If you’re near an emergency care facility, make arrangements for the victim to be seen without increased delay. Uptown Emergency Room knows that Texas summers inflict serious harm, often by way of their brutally high temperatures. If you are located within the Dallas area, call us at (214) 217-1818.