- News Releases
Much of the U.S. is facing severe winter storms and subzero temperatures. And one of the first concerns, if you're outdoors, should be frostbite.
Frostbite is an injury caused by freezing of the skin and underlying tissues. First your skin becomes very cold and red, then numb, hard and pale. Frostbite is most common on the fingers, toes, nose, ears, cheeks and chin. Exposed skin in cold, windy weather is most vulnerable to frostbite. But frostbite can occur on skin covered by gloves or other clothing.
Signs and symptoms of frostbite include:
But frostbite isn't the only danger in the bitter cold. There are other serious health conditions to be worried about in frigid temperatures.
Dr. David Nestler, a Mayo Clinic emergency medicine specialist, says hospital emergency departments see an influx of weather-related injuries with each snowstorm. He reminds the public about the dangers of frostbite and other health problems and he says falls are amongst the most common emergencies. "The snow and ice make it easy to slip and fall," says Dr. Nestler. "We see many, many broken bones because of that." Weather-related vehicle accidents, heart attacks triggered while shoveling snow and exposure injuries, such as frostbite, also send more people to emergency rooms.
Watch: Dr. Nestler discusses the danger of cold weather.
Journalists: Broadcast-quality sound bites with Dr. Nestler are in the downloads at the end of the post. Please "Courtesy: David Nestler, M.D. / Emergency Medicine / Mayo Clinic."
Mayo Clinic Minute: Why the risk of frostbite is greater than you think
For the safety of its patients, staff and visitors, Mayo Clinic has strict masking policies in place. Anyone shown without a mask was either recorded prior to COVID-19 or recorded in a nonpatient care area where social distancing and other safety protocols were followed.
World TB Day will be observed Friday, March 24, which makes this a good time to learn about this potentially serious infectious disease. In 2021, 7,882 cases ...
DEAR MAYO CLINIC: I have a group of friends with whom I love to travel. We plan several trips a year, and this spring we are ...
MANKATO, Minn. — You've thought about it for years. You've dreamed of crossing the finish line. It's on your bucket list, or maybe it's become ...