A Handy Indicator Of Hypothermia

A Handy Indicator Of Hypothermia

Noun – Claw hand is a term used by the open water swimming community to describe an abnormal finger and hand position caused by when the core body temperature of an open water swimmer decreases significantly.

As the swimmer become hypothermic, blood withdraws to the core of the body, causing the fingers to curl and the hand to turn inwards towards the palm.

Note: it is different from the medical term also known as ulnar claw that develops due to a problem with the ulnar nerve.

Photo shows the Traversee internationale du lac St-Jean where water temperatures can drop significantly below the comfortable for many competitors.

Copyright © 2012 by Open Water Source
Steven Munatones