▲ When the cold snap comes, timely use of the electric heater can prevent the occurrence of stroke.

(Photo courtesy/Wang Haoming)

Text/Wang Haoming

Not only will global warming make summers hotter and more frequent, but winters will also be colder.

These acute environmental temperature changes will thicken blood viscosity, increase blood pressure and increase blood cholesterol, affect health and cause cardiovascular diseases, such as stroke.

Acute ambient temperature changes increase stroke morbidity and mortality, and the effects on the body may appear within 6 hours. The report shows that every 1°C increase increases the risk of stroke by 1.13%, while a decrease of 1°C increases the risk of stroke 1.2%.

In addition, the carry-over effect of cold temperature was strong in the risk of death from stroke, and this effect may persist for 2 weeks.

This means that when the ambient temperature is low for a long time, the impact on human health may appear in a shorter period of time and be more serious.

The association was stronger in people over 65 years of age and was gender heterogeneous; men were more likely to have a stroke in hot weather, while women were more likely to have a stroke in colder weather.

Please read on...

The risk of stroke increases when the temperature is lower than 17°C for more than 72 hours

Taiwan is also different from European and American countries. Our winter is very short, and the temperature is lower only when the cold snap comes.

Most households usually do not use such equipment as electric heaters.

Therefore, the ambient temperature measured outside can better reflect the indoor ambient temperature exposure.

According to the results of local research in Taiwan, when the outdoor temperature is lower than 17°C and the past 72 hours have been particularly cold, there is a higher incidence of cerebral hemorrhage.

Therefore, when the cold snap comes, timely use of heating or electric heaters can prevent strokes.

(The author is Deputy Secretary-General of Taiwan Neurospine Surgery Association and Director of Neurosurgery Department of E-Da Hospital)

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  • stroke

  • low temperature

  • Cardiovascular diseases

  • health care

  • cholesterol lowering

  • soaring blood pressure

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