The risks of summer-related illnesses such as heat rash, heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke are increased significantly when a person is introduced to extreme heat while engaged in strenuous activities. 

Heat edema 

When you have to go or work in the heat, or suddenly from the air-conditioned room to the sun, the lower body areas such as ankles, feet are prone to edema due to blood vessels dilating to release heat. This may occur for a few hours or days, then clears up when the body has adapted to the environment.

Management: Raise your legs while sleeping to allow blood vessels to circulate normally. Do not drink diuretics to reduce edema because it will make the body more dehydrated, detrimental to the body.

Hot weather easily leads to the risk of heat shock, fainting.

Heat rash

Heat rash is generally misunderstood to be an affliction for babies, but heat rash can affect adults, too, especially during hot, humid weather. Heat rash develops when blocked pores, or sweat ducts, trap perspiration under your skin.

Heat rash – sometimes called ‘prickly heat’, this is a skin irritation caused by excessive sweating. It can occur at any age, but is most common in young children. It looks like a red cluster of pimples or small blisters. It is most likely to occur on the neck and upper chest, in the groin, under the breasts and in the elbow creases..

Symptoms: Adults usually develop heat rash in skin folds where clothing causes friction. Symptoms include superficial blisters and can even present as deep, red lumps. Some forms of heat rash can feel extremely itchy. 

Treatment: Heat rash will usually clear on its own by cooling the skin and avoiding exposure to the heat that caused it. If symptoms such as increased pain, swelling, redness, or warmth extend for longer than a few days reach out to a doctor for specialized treatment.

Heat cramps

Heat cramps – these include muscle pains or spasms, usually in the abdomen, arms or legs. They may occur after strenuous activity in a hot environment, when the body gets depleted of salt and water. They may also be a symptom of heat exhaustion.

Symptoms: Someone who is experiencing heat cramps will feel muscle spasms that are painful, involuntary, brief, intermittent and self-limited (meaning, they go away on their own). 

Treatment: To treat heat cramps, begin with rest and a sports drink that includes electrolytes and salt or drink cool water. You can make your own salt solution by mixing a quarter to a half teaspoon of salt into a quart of water. Usually, heat cramps will dissipate on their own, but if you begin to see conditions worsen and the patient becomes dizzy, nauseous, experiences shortness of breath and a fast heartbeat, you should see a doctor. Heat cramps often accompany a more serious heat-related illness: heat exhaustion.

Dizziness and fainting

Dizziness and fainting – heat-related dizziness and fainting results from reduced blood flow to the brain. Heat causes an increase in blood flow to the skin and pooling of blood in the legs, which can lead to a sudden drop in blood pressure. There can be a feeling of light-headedness before fainting occurs. People who travel for a long time in the heat, climb mountains, move around, do military exercises ... easily faint due to increased sweating, which causes loss of salt and water but is not supplemented in time. The volume of water in the blood vessels decreases, causing a drop in blood pressure, reducing blood flow to the brain when standing.

Thermal syncope is often accompanied by other symptoms such as confusion, dizziness, dizziness, headache, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, low urine, concentrated urine, etc.

Treatment: In this case, first aid is needed to reduce the sequelae of the body. First aid steps include: For fainting people with low head, move to cool air, expand clothing, compensate for mineral saline. Continue to monitor for 30 minutes, if the condition is stable, do not need to go to the hospital.

Heat exhaustion

People are exhausted when they go to the sun because they lose salt and water for a longer time than the above situations. When exhausted, the body sweats a lot, feeling chills, cold and wet skin, rapid pulse, headache, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, cramps, fatigue, fainting ... moreover, exhausted people can suffer from heat stroke, which is the most severe form of temperature-related illness.

Treatment: Need to stop all activities, move to a cool place and replace water, mineral salts with appropriate solutions ... After resting time, the body will recover completely. In addition, you can use a cool towel to wipe, apply to areas with many blood vessels such as the forehead, back, armpits, groin ... to absorb heat, helping the body to release heat faster. Drink as much water as possible.

In 30 minutes to an hour, symptoms do not improve but increase, for example headache, vomiting, more dizziness, requiring hospital treatment.


Heatstroke – this is a medical emergency and requires urgent attention. Heatstroke occurs when the core body temperature rises above 40.5 °C and the body’s internal systems start to shut down. Many organs in the body suffer damage and the body temperature must be reduced quickly. Most people will have profound central nervous system changes such as delirium, coma and seizures. The person may stagger, appear confused, have a fit or collapse and become unconscious. As well as effects on the nervous system, there can be liver, kidney, muscle and heart damage.

Symptoms: Heat stroke symptoms include high body temperature, altered mental state or behavior, alteration in sweating, nausea and vomiting, flushed skin, rapid breathing, racing heart rate and headache. 

Treatment: Someone who is suffering from a heat stroke must take immediate action to cool down their body while waiting for emergency treatment. To do this, move to shade or indoors, remove excess clothing and cool with whatever means available (put in a cool tub of water or a cool shower, spray with a garden hose, sponge with cool water, fan while misting with cool water, or place ice packs or cold, wet towels on the person’s head, neck, armpits and groin)


City International Hospital's Department of Accident & Emergency (A&E) opens and operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, including weekends and holidays.

The hospital has designed and built a large emergency department area, full-fleged facilities, modern equipment in accordance with international standards with a capacity of up to 10 beds located on the ground floor of the hospital, the entrance to the department. spacious and airy to ensure the smooth and timely export process.

A&E provides urgent care to patients who need urgent care which need to be diagnosed and treated promptly and accurately:

  • Drug overdose and chemical poisoning
  • Traumatic injury
  • Patients who have major surgical illnesses or other issues that require immediate treatment such as acute appendicitis, intestinal obstruction, intestinal perforation, gastrointestinal bleeding ...
  • An emergency medical condition such as cerebrovascular accident, acute myocardial infarction, diabetic coma, sepsis….

If you suspect you or your child may have eaten a poisonous mushroom do not wait for symptoms to occur, contact City International Hospital Emergency Department (CIH) at the emergency number: (028) 6290 1155.

Heatstroke is a medical emergency and requires urgent attention: 

  • Call (+8428) 6290 1155 for an ambulance.
  • Get the person to a cool, shady area and lay them down while you’re waiting for emergency medical help.
  • Remove clothing and wet their skin with water, fanning continuously.
  • Do not give the person fluids to drink.
  • Position an unconscious person on their side and clear their airway.
  • If medical attention is delayed, seek further instructions from ambulance or hospital emergency staff. 

 City International Hospital

  • Address: No. 3, 17A Street, Binh Tri Dong B Ward, Binh Tan Dist. (Next to AEON Mall Binh Tan), Ho Chi Minh City.
  • Operator: (+8428) 6280 3333, ext. 0
  • 24/7 Emergency: (+8428) 6290 1155
  • Website:
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General disclaimer

 Always consult your doctor regarding any concern about your health. Your doctor will be in the best position to give the appropriate medical advice. For suspected undesirable drug reaction and seek medical attention immediately.