Humans primarily disperse heat by evaporation through the means of sweating.1 In the ED, evaporation can be maximized by undressing the patient, spraying or pouring warm water on the patients exposed skin, and propelling air over the skin with a fan. Cold water can induce vasoconstriction and therefore reduce potential heat loss.
1. Walker J, Barnes SB, Heat emergencies. In: Tintinalli JE, Kelen GD, Stapczynski JS, editors. Emergency medicine: a comprehensive study guide. 5th ed. New York: McGraw-Hill; 2000:123942.
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