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With prolonged power outages, another danger lurks

Published: Feb. 16, 2021 at 10:46 PM CST
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SHERMAN, Texas (KXII) - Frostbite is just one more reason to be concerned about hours without heat.

“If it goes all the way to the deepest tissues then that’s when you can lose a finger, lose skin permanent disability type things,” Owner and Physician at One Medical Mark Buckner said.

Buckner said you can get frostbite when temperatures get below freezing in as little as 12 hours, and if you’re wet and exposed to the cold, even sooner.

Buckner said symptoms of frostbite include numbness in skin affected, pain, loss of pain, change in color and blistering of the skin.

“If it gets a certain temperature inside your house where you say you don’t have power and it’s getting into the forties in your house then you need to right then, that’s the time to start putting on layers of clothing,” Buckner said.

He said he hasn’t received any patients yet but is expecting them to come in the next couple of days.

Board Certified Emergency Medicine Physician at Red River ER, Eric Robinson, said not to use propane or natural gas as that will cause carbon monoxide poisoning.

“It’s not safe to run outdoor heaters that are powered by propane or natural gas to be run inside a home or in a closed space as it can produce carbon monoxide,” Robinson said.

To prevent frostbite, you can layer up, and if your hands are affected, put them underneath your armpits.

“If you actually do get frostbite and you got symptoms and you’ll see it on your hands or fingers or wherever it is if you have it that bad and you truly have frostbite then you need to go to the hospital,” Buckner said.

If you have gotten frostbite before you can get re-exposed with being out in the cold.

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