How are hyperthermia and rhabdomyolysis treated in cocaine toxicity?

Updated: Sep 01, 2018
  • Author: Lynn Barkley Burnett, MD, EdD, LLB(c); Chief Editor: Sage W Wiener, MD  more...
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Answer

If psychostimulant-intoxicated patients do not die as a result of cardiac or cerebrovascular complications, it is essential to prevent further morbidity by controlling hyperthermia and treating rhabdomyolysis.

Hyperthermia is best treated by submersion in an ice bath, but may also be treated with convection cooling, which involves spraying the patient's exposed body with tepid water as fans circulate air.

Rapid fluid resuscitation promotes urine output and alleviates the effect of myoglobin on the kidneys. Generous amounts of intravenous fluids with close monitoring of urine output and pH are indicated for rhabdomyolysis associated with severe psychostimulant toxicity.

See Treatment and Medication for more detail.


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