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hypothermia, risk for

Vulnerable to a failure of thermoregulation that may result in a core body temperature below the normal diurnal range, which may compromise health. SEE: Nursing Diagnoses Appendix.

hypothermia, risk for perioperative

Vulnerable to an inadvertent drop in core body temperature below 36°C (96.8°F) occurring 1 hour before to 24 hours after surgery, which may compromise health. SEE: Nursing Diagnoses Appendix.

hypothermia blanket

A specially designed blanket used either to reduce the body temperature of patients with fever or to induce an artificially low body temperature, as in patients who have suffered hypoxic-ischemic brain injury. It has flexible tubing between the layers of cloth through which cold water is circulated. SYN: cooling blanket.

hypothermia-induced coagulopathy

A reduction in normal blood clotting that results from lower than normal body temperatures. Some clotting factors in the coagulation cascade function poorly in hypothermic patients.

hypothermia therapy

Induced hypothermia.


(hī-poth′ĕ-sĭs, ′ĕ-sēz″) pl. hypotheses [Gr. hypothesis, basis, supposition] 1. An empirically testable assertion about one or more concepts. It is assumed in order to test its soundness or to facilitate investigation of a class of phenomena. 2. A conclusion drawn before all the facts are established and tentatively accepted as a basis for further investigation. Particular hypotheses are listed under the first word. SEE: e.g., baby lung hypothesis; Lyon hypothesis; null hypothesis.


(hī″pō-thī′royd″) [hypo- + thyroid] Pert. to hypothyroidism.


(hī″pō-thī′royd″ izm) [hypo- + thyroid + -ism] The clinical consequences of inadequate levels of thyroid hormone in the body. Chronic or acute thyroid deficiency causes diminished basal metabolism, intolerance of cold temperatures, fatigue, mental apathy, physical sluggishness, constipation, muscle aches, dry skin and hair, and coarsening of features. Collectively, these symptoms are called myxedema. In infancy, inadequate levels of thyroid hormone cause cretinism. SEE: thyroid function test; Nursing Diagnoses Appendix.

INCIDENCE: A little less than 5% of the population has hypothyroidism. In the U.S., the prevalence is lower in African-Americans than in other groups.

CAUSES: Most patients with hypothyroidism either have Hashimoto (autoimmune) thyroiditis or have undergone treatment for hyperthyroidism with thyroidectomy or radioactive iodine. Occasionally, hypothyroidism is drug induced, e.g., in patients treated with antithyroid drugs (propylthiouracil) or the antiarrhythmic agent amiodarone. In areas where salt is not iodized, hypothyroidism may result from dietary iodine deficiency. Hypothyroidism may occasionally result from inadequate stimulation of the thyroid gland by the anterior pituitary gland or from inadequate release of thyrotropin-releasing hormone by the hypothalamus.

DIAGNOSIS: Long before the symptoms of hypothyroidism ...

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