Beware of the heatwave: Heat stroke can be fatal

PUBLIC health physician Datuk Dr Zainal Ariffin Omar, speaking with the national news agency Bernama said the public must remain alert and not take lightly the risk of heat stroke which can be fatal following the current El Nino phenomenon.

The doctor said the community needs to be careful, especially during Ramadan, considering that the Muslim community is facing drought conditions for a long period involving more than 10 hours due to fasting.

He explained that the people are faced with the threat of heat stroke, which can cause the individual involved to faint in the early stages, and this could lead to fainting and coma, especially for the comorbid group.

“There are a few people who still underestimate the risk of heat stroke and think it is just a normal condition when it can lead to death,” he said.

A three-year-old child in Malaysia has tragically succumbed to heat stroke, as reported by the National Disaster Management Agency (NADMA).

This incident, occurring on April 1 in Kelantan, marks the country’s second heat-related fatality following the death of a 22-year-old in Pahang on Feb 2.

Nadma’s report reveals a concerning uptick in heat-related illnesses, totaling 37 cases thus far.

These include 10 cases of heat stroke, 26 instances of heat exhaustion, and one case of heat cramps.

In general, if a person experiences symptoms including a body temperature exceeding 40 degrees Celsius, abnormal behaviour, sweating, heart palpitations, feeling nauseous and vomiting, the individual involved needs to go to the hospital immediately to get treatment. – April 7, 2024

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