Lexington doctor warns of winter weather risks

Published: Feb. 14, 2021 at 1:52 PM EST
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Slick roads and power outages aren’t the only dangers of winter weather. Doctors say they see an increase in emergency room visits.

Sometimes it only takes one step out the door.

“We see significant risks of slips and falls. The problem with slips and falls is of course the potential for fractures, especially of the hips, backs, arms, head injuries,” Dr. Ryan Stanton explained.

Dr. Stanton said the falls happen to people of all ages, but dealing with snow and ice could also lead to cardiac strain and stress for the older population.

“Once you get a heavy snow that is significant workload on people, it’s basically stress test in your own driveway and sidewalks,” he said.

For people who work, live, or get stranded outside, there’s a risk for hypothermia.

“Everything from just frost nip to frostbite to the potential risk of losing toes, fingers, ears, nose, to a more significant hypothermia that can be life-threatening.”

It’s not all doom and gloom though. Dr. Stanton advised if you do venture outside for work or play, just be prepared.

“Dressing for those conditions, having a plan in place, having a phone available to call 911, having a blanket.” He recommended keeping blankets in all of your family’s cars.

If there’s an emergency and you don’t feel comfortable driving in the snow, Dr. Stanton pointed out that ambulances are better-equipped for tough conditions.

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