Rush Hospital Seeing Uptick In Weather-Related Injuries

CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) — Rush University Medical Center is seeing an uptick in weather-related injuries.

We’re not talking about injuries from slipping and falling on ice. In Rush’s Emergency Department, Dr. Paul Casey is seeing skin injuries that are one step away from frostbite.

“As we’re speaking, I’m looking through our current ED census, and I see a couple of those finger-related injuries,” he said.

Dr. Casey, who is the vice chair of operations in the Emergency Department, says a single pair of gloves — even good gloves — is not sufficient. He recommends wearing two pairs.

“I think we hit a temperature at which any sort of gloves are not going to be effective for a prolonged period of time.”

And if you have to spend time outside, Dr. Casey advises taking breaks. “If you do need to be outside for anything over an hour, you should be taking a break — going in and re-warming and giving yourself at least 15-20 minutes to re-warm before you have to go back outside.”

Other advice from Dr. Casey: Dress in layers and don’t drink alcohol outside.

This bone-chilling stretch of extremely cold weather in Chicago could tie a record for the longest stretch of temperatures below 20 by the end of the week.

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