Doctor warns to stay vigilant from heat related illness

Doctor warns of heat related illness

Heat indices have been hovering over 105 degrees since the beginning of June. So far, heat related illnesses have been average for this time of year, but that could start to change.
 
The Corpus Christi Fire Department said they have averaged a normal number of heat sickness calls over the past three weeks, but a doctor said higher humidity could cause that number to jump.
 
Dr. Steve Krebel is a pediatric emergency medicine specialist at Driscoll Children's Hospital. He said the number of heat cases in the hospital's emergency room this year is about average but that number may rise.
 
"It's actually the heat or a combination of the temperature and the humidity, so that really determines the severity of the disease," Krebel said. "So you can have a temperature in the low 90s, but if you have humidity of 50-percent or greater, which here in Corpus Christi we certainly can see, you can get into trouble with heat illness just with that."
 
CCFD Captain James Brown said they have only had six heat related ambulance calls in the last six weeks, but it is only the beginning of summer.
 
Padre Island Surf Camp averages a dozen students a day spending up to seven hours on the beach in the sun. Camp Director Joshua Perez said heat illness is a number one concern.
 
"We give them one of these little rash guards right here. It's kind of a lycra shirt. Basically what this does is kind of protect them and keep them cool," Perez said. "Another thing we do is give them sunscreen. Make sure they put sunscreen on their face."
 
Perez said camp counselors make sure the students have shade and water to keep them safe from the heat and sun. Kids and seniors are most susceptible to the heat and most aren't aware they're being affected.
 
"Whether it's at the poolside or on the beach, or whether it's at home in the pool, there has to be vigilance from the parents," Krebel said.
 
The most common indication of heat illness is being tired.
 
Krebel reminds everyone when you treat what you think is a heat related illness, think air conditioning and sports drinks until the victim is feeling better.

© 2017 KIII-TV


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