Frostbite: Predisposing Factors and Predictors of Poor Outcome

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A retrospective review of 79 frostbite cases over a 10-year period at a major Northern Canadian hospital was performed. Factors predisposing to frostbite injury and predictors of a poor outcome were sought. Impaired cerebral function was found to be the major predisposing factor to frostbite injury. At the time of injury, 53% of patients were under the influence of alcohol and 16% were suffering from psychiatric illnesses. Lower extremity frostbite, infection, and delay in seeking medical attention were factors found to be associated with a poor outcome.

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