©2018 WebMD, Inc. All rights reserved. eMedicineHealth does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. See Additional Information.

Frostbite vs. Hypothermia Differences in Symptoms, Signs, and Stages Topic Guide

Frostbite vs. Hypothermia Differences in Symptoms, Signs, and Stages Frostbite vs. Hypothermia Differences in Symptoms, Signs, and Stages:

Frostbite and hypothermia are two real dangers from cold exposure. Aside from cold exposure, risk factors for frostbite and hypothermia is alcohol consumption. Fingers, toes, ears, and nose are the first parts to freeze. Treatment for frost bite and hypothermia includes warming the person.

Frostbite occurs when the body is exposed to extremely cold temperatures. For the body to continue functioning under these conditions, blood circulation moves to the internal organs and brain, and away from the skin and extremities, for example, the fingers, hands, toes, and feet. The lack of blood circulation to these body parts causes frostbite. Hypothermia occurs when the body is exposed to extremely cold conditions over a prolonged period, and as a result the body temperature becomes dangerously low (95 F or 35 C).

Frostbite vs. Hypothermia Differences in Symptoms, Signs, and Stages Topic Guide - Visuals