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Unconscious Casualty
If You Have to Move the Casualty

Extreme Heat

Heat exhaustion is a condition resulting from the loss of fluid and salt, usually through excessive sweating. Heatstroke generally occurs rapidly when the brain's temperature regulator fails to work effectively. This tends to occur when the casualty has been in a very hot environment or has a fever caused by a condition such as malaria.

Heat exhaustion

Heat exhaustion is very similar to shock in that fluid is being lost from the body. It most commonly occurs when a person has been exercising and not replacing fluid content: cyclists and joggers are common sufferers from the condition.

Signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion

  • History of exertion
  • Pale, cold and clammy skin
  • Fast, weak pulse
  • Fast, shallow breathing
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness and disorientation
  • Lapse into unconsciousness


  1. Lay the casualty down in a cool place and raise her legs.
  2. If the casualty is conscious give sips of a weak salt solution (one teaspoon to one litre of water).
  3. Maintain a check on the casualty's consciousness level. If it deteriorates, place the casualty in the recovery position and call for emergency help.
  4. If the casualty's condition improves rapidly, advise her to see a doctor.


In heatstroke, the body becomes very hot very quickly and this condition can be fatal. The signs and symptoms are very similar to those of a stroke.

Signs and symptoms

  • Hot, flushed and dry skin
  • Slow, full and bounding pulse
  • Noisy breathing
  • High body temperature
  • Headache
  • Disorientation
  • Lapse into unconsciousness


  1. Check airway and breathing. If unconscious, turn the casualty into the recovery position. Be prepared to resuscitate if necessary.
  2. If the casualty is conscious, move to a cool environment. If this is impossible or the casualty is unconscious, try to cool the environment (use fans, open doors and keep crowds away).
  3. Call for emergency help and reassure the casualty if he or she is conscious.
  4. Remove outer clothes and wrap the casualty in a cold, wet sheet. Keep it wet. Continue the cooling process. If the body temperature drops, replace the wet sheet with a dry one.
  5. Continue to monitor the casualty while you wait for help.

Slip slap slop

The three simple rules for prevention of sun-related problems are:

  • Slip into a T-shirt
  • Slap on a hat
  • Slop on the suncream

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Disclaimer: website is designed for educational purposes only. It is not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent any disease. Always take the advice of professional health care for specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment. We will not be liable for any complications, or other medical accidents arising from the use of any information on this web site. Please note that medical information is constantly changing. Therefore some information may be out of date.