Evidence of shivering fatigue: verification of a prediction model


  1. Tikuisis, P.
  2. Eyolfson, D.A.
  3. Xu, X.
  4. Giesbrecht, G.G.
Corporate Authors
Defence and Civil Inst of Environmental Medicine, Downsview ONT (CAN)
Search and Rescue authorities in Canada use a prediction model of survival time for cold exposure developed at DCIEM. This model predicts body cooling rates based on anthropometric, environmental, and clothing protection inputs. In circumstances where the cold stress overwhelms the individual's capacity to generate sufficient metabolic heat to offset heat loss, survival time essentially depends on how quickly the body cools to the point of lethal hypothermia (assumed to be a core temperature of 28C). Often, the cold stress is less severe and the body attains a stable core temperature, usually at a value less than normal. In this circumstance, survival time depends on how long shivering metabolism can be maintained to offset the steady state rate of heat loss. The survival model uses a prediction of shivering endurance developed by Wissler, yet this prediction has not been verified. The present study was undertaken to determine the onset of decline in steady state shivering during continuous exposure to cold and to test the shivering endurance prediction. The first phase of the study determined maximum shivering intensities and the second phase addressed shivering endurance.
Thermoregulation;Body cooling rates;Survival model
Report Number
DCIEM-SL-1999-129 — Paper
Date of publication
15 Mar 2001
Number of Pages
Hardcopy;Document Image stored on Optical Disk

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