Show Summary Details
Page of

Diagnosis, assessment, and management of hyperthermic crises 

Diagnosis, assessment, and management of hyperthermic crises
Diagnosis, assessment, and management of hyperthermic crises

Kevin Thornton

and Michael Gropper

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD MEDICINE ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Medicine Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 01 July 2022

Malignant hyperthermia, the neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS), and the serotonin syndrome are the principal disorders associated with life-threatening hyperthermia in the intensive care unit. While each is a clinically unique entity, all can progress to multisystem organ dysfunction with acidosis, shock, and death. MH usually results from exposure to halogenated volatile anaesthetics and/or succinylcholine and symptoms of increased CO2 production and respiratory acidosis progress rapidly without prompt intervention, including the administration of dantrolene. NMS is a syndrome of rigidity and altered mental status seen most commonly in patients being treated with antipsychotic medications. The serotonin syndrome is seen in patients treated with serotonergic agents including selective serotonin reuptake or monoamine oxidase inhibitors and tricyclic antidepressants. The salient clinical finding is clonus, but agitation, altered mental status and autonomic dysfunction are common. Recognizing the non-specific features of these syndromes presents a challenge as they are life-threatening if not treated promptly and correctly with specific therapies.

Access to the complete content on Oxford Medicine Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.