Published: | Updated: November 25, 2018

Definition - What does Frostbite mean?

Frostbite is the physical ramification of exposing the body to extreme cold. The blood temperature cools and body extremities start to freeze. Such freezing effects both the skin and underlying tissue. This commonly starts in the hands and feet as the body tries to keep warm blood flowing through the core and heart.

Safeopedia explains Frostbite

Treating frostbite must be done slowly and delicately to minimize tissue damage. Splinting and wrapping frostbitten extremities is important, as it limits movement to these areas. Warming the frostbite areas by ‘rubbing’ is not recommended, as is giving the body a false sense of warmth and can distress the heart. Warming should be done by way of adding blankets to the patient and slowly placing the frostbitten extremities into tepid water of 37.5 degrees, the ideal blood temperature. If neither of these options is available, body-to-body contact is recommended until help can be secured. Frostbite is a common workplace injury among forestry workers and meat operation workers.

This definition was written in the context of Environmental, Health, and Safety
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