Hospitals on alert for heat-related illnesses

August 9, 2010 4:14:55 AM PDT
The heat and humidity are making for dangerous conditions outside. So area hospitals are on alert for people with heat-related illnesses. At least two people have died this summer from the heat.

Doctors say don't let the clouds fool you because that's really when the dehydration and some of the heat-related illnesses can sneak up on you.

Runners we talked to at Memorial Park are really feeling the heat.

"By the time you get through with one loop, and you start coming around, it kinda feels like that you're in an oven," runner David Webb said.

Webb already had cycled earlier on Sunday, and during the afternoon, he was gearing up for a three-mile run. But the sun is forcing him to take it slow.

"You don't want to try and go out and just kill it because otherwise, you might wind up face down or something," he said.

And that's no joke. Doctors say heat-related illnesses and deaths are up this summer.

"These two patients that I saw are over 106 degrees," said Ben Taub General Hospital's Dr. Joe Shiber.

Shiber says if your body breaks 105 degrees, your kidneys, liver and nervous system are on the brink of shutting down.

How do you get that hot? Over-exerting yourself outside or just from the environment itself.

But just like many of us, Webb just wants to get in his workout.

"I won't do it now, but I'll do it later," he said.

If you like to exercise outdoors, Shiber suggests you do it early in the morning or late in the afternoon, drink lots of water before and after your workout and try to avoid alcohol and caffeine.

If you have to work outside, Shiber says you should wear a hat and some loose, light-colored clothing and take plenty of breaks.


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