Wilderness Medicine Case Study 15
You are leading a father/son day hike for a local camp. The father's ages range between 35 and 54 with various levels of fitness; their sons are 11 or 12 years old. The hike is a point-to-point hike covering a total of five miles. You are currently a hiking up a rather steep grade to a prominent overlook; there is only a few hundred feet to the top and just over a mile remaining to your pick-up spot. The day is sunny and hot with an ambient temperature of 88º F. One father, Bill, an overweight man in his early 50s, repeatedly stops to catch his breath on the hill. After his second rest stop you move him to the front of the group in an effort to keep the group together and slow the pace. Upon reaching the top at 3 PM he is clearly exhausted, slightly pale, sweating heavily, and complaining of the heat; the slight breeze at the overlook is clearly welcome. While resting, he admits he "is more out of shape than he thought" and relates that he is otherwise healthy with no personal or family history of heart disease; although, his physician has been trying to get him to start statins to lower his cholesterol. He can't remember the last time he urinated or the color of his urine at the time; he thinks it was when he woke up this morning. He reports drinking about a quart of water on the hike thus far but not snacking; he is very thirsty now. His color returns and after 10 minutes, his pulse is 86 and regular, his respirations are 20 and easy, and his oral temperature is 102º F.
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