The first thing patients need to do when they’re in the hospital is keep their temperature stable.
A study by a group of researchers at the University of Virginia and Vanderbilt University has found that keeping a patient’s heart rate stable in a high-pressure environment like a hospital setting can prevent a number of serious complications.
In their study, the researchers found that the temperature of a patient in a hospital room fluctuated between 20 and 40 degrees Celsius for as little as six minutes before the heart rate was stable, with a maximum of 20 degrees Celsius after a sustained rise.
The researchers also found that high-temperature conditions were associated with a significant increase in mortality, especially among patients with heart disease.
The study was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
In the study, all the patients in the study were admitted to the University Hospitals Lexington and Elizabeth hospitals, and the researchers followed their progress throughout their stay.
The patients were monitored with ventilators for 24 hours and their vital signs recorded by the hospital.
The temperature of the patient was recorded every 20 minutes throughout the stay.
After the six-minute minimum temperature drop, the patients were transferred to a room in a low-pressure facility, and their heart rates were recorded every 30 minutes.
The maximum heart rate for each patient was measured every 60 minutes.
All the patients had a mean body temperature of 79.3 degrees Celsius at the end of their stay, the study found.
However, the average heart rate of the patients at the high- and low-temperatures varied by up to four degrees, with the high temperature patients at 82.1 and 82.3 respectively.
The mean heart rate at the low- and high-thermal temperatures ranged from 80.1 to 79.9 degrees Celsius, with no significant differences in the maximum or minimum rates.
The researchers said their findings have significant implications for managing patients with high blood pressure, heart failure and other cardiac problems, as they suggest that maintaining a patient at a stable temperature is essential to preventing potentially fatal complications, including cardiovascular events.
In addition to the increased mortality rates and complications caused by high- or low-thermocirculation conditions, the findings also suggest that keeping patients warm in hospital is important to prevent hypothermia, a condition in which blood temperature falls below 85 degrees Celsius.
“The current guidelines recommend keeping the temperature stable for about 24 hours before a patient is transferred to the hospital, but that would not have the same impact as keeping the heart rates stable,” Dr. William S. Sperling, director of the Vanderbilt Center for the Study of Infectious Diseases, told CBS News.
Sperling said that even though the study did not measure the temperature at the hospital room, he thinks the findings suggest that patients should stay in a warm environment to prevent heart failure.
“If you can keep the heart beating, that’s a pretty good indication that you can maintain the temperature in the body,” he said.
“But the fact that the body is able to maintain that temperature and not be hypothermic, I think that’s important.”
The study’s authors stressed that the study was observational and they do not think that it provides a definitive answer.
“There’s a lot more work that needs to be done before we can say, ‘Oh, this is the answer,’ ” Sperler said.