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  • Head heats up, face turns red, days to cool off

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    Old 05-14-2001, 09:28 PM   #1
    smokedetector_98's Avatar
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    Head heats up, face turns red, days to cool off

    I am writing on behalf of a 48 year old woman who has been suffering for over 14 years with the problem of her face and head heating up disproportionate to the rest of her body as soon as she is exposed for a relatively short period of time to heat. We are not talking about excessive heat, all it takes is a few degrees or so above 68 F and her face often turns red, being hot to the touch. The rest of her body may heat up normally, but cools down normally also.

    Significant is the fact that there is anhidrosis [lack of perspiration] above her shoulders during all these bouts which probably explains why it can take a week or so under constant air conditioning to eventually return to normal.

    It first began in the fall of 1986. She was on a playground with children when her face and head got extremely hot and red. She then became nauseated, very tired and weak. She also experienced breathing difficulties, blurred vision, and chest pains.

    Once she got inside the building, she found some relief by drinking ice water and using ice packs. Still nauseated and very tired, she had to go home to sleep.

    She went to the doctor the next day and reported what had happened the day before. She was now experiencing bad diarrhea in addition to continuing to feel nauseated and tired. The doctor first told her that it was probably a type of heat exhaustion, but upon checking further, he ruled that out. He next suspected, but later dismissed, her having experienced the first stages of heat stroke. He then did some other tests, including hormone testing, but came up with negative-normal results.

    The doctor told her to limit her time outside in the sun and in the heat, to wear a hat or use an umbrella. But neither stopped the heat from causing her face to get hot and red. Even the 20 minute exposure limit he had her follow was much too long since she was very much overheated by the end of that limit, causing her to go back indoors. The 20 minutes then became 10 minutes. Although a better choice, it still ended up with the same result. Once it became apparent that even 5 minutes would not work, he sent her to a specialist.

    The specialist became one of many who all so far have failed to come up with any kind of treatment or cure. She has been tested for various diseases, but all results have been negative including lupus three times! It is getting worse each year as she gets older.

    She finds that those few times when she is caught off guard without immediate recourse to air conditioning, she panics, especially after her breathing becomes difficult and her chest hurts. It is as if she is having a mild heart attack or worse. The nausea is really bad when this happens.

    The doctors have tried many things they believed it to be, but nothing has turned out as they expected when it came to the testing. Her thyroid and hormones have all been tested many times, but each time the test results show normal or negative.

    She now is unable to work and has to live most of the year under constant air conditioning, either at home or in the car. She lives in Arkansas, but even in the Seattle area where I am, she suffered last week while she was here during comparatively warm, but not hot weather. I have no air conditioner so little wonder that she had to return home to her air conditioned environment.

    Is there anyone out there who can identify with her case, someone who suffers heat intolerance, but without an accompanying disease or condition like lupus?

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    Old 06-14-2001, 01:07 PM   #2
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    joanerinbrent's Avatar
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    Re: Head heats up, face turns red, days to cool off

    I guess that you can say that I have somethign similar, but not as intense. My face gets red when I get hot- it doesn't have to be real hot, or when I get upset <which is normal I guess> Most of the time I wear shorts when people have pants on and I prefer tank tops during the summer when it is over 80 becuase I feel like I am going to overheat. I have never thought about going to a doctor to check this out but I know that it is not normal. When I was younger this didn't happen. There was a summer when I wore pants and got sick- almost like a heat stroke. Since that time the heat really does a number on my body and it shows in my face. So in a way, I know what they are going through.


    Old 06-21-2001, 12:17 AM   #3
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    Re: Head heats up, face turns red, days to cool off

    She should be drinking at least 8 glasses of water a day. Tell her to carry a water bottle with her for when she experiences this. It will help her cool down. It also helps to not be anxious about the heating up and turning red. The more out of your mind you put it the better. When youre anxious about it the more likely your body will bring it on in that situation. How old is she? She may be experiencing hot flashes. She should also stay away from acoholic beverages if possible. They dialate and weaken the blood vessels in the face. She could even be allergic to something. Did she get tested for allergies? This also sounds like it could be a form of panic attack. She may want to consider seeing a mental health doctor for panic medication.<p>[This message has been edited by ceecee (edited 06-21-2001).]

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