Hypothermia is a rare but recognised phenomenon in multiple sclerosis (MS) with less than 20 cases reported in the literature. We present a case in which a novel monitoring garment was designed by a patient's partner, in response to recurrent episodes of hypothermia.
The patient had three acute admissions to hospital with hypothermia over three months. Her temperature was found to be as low as 29.3°C on these occasions. This was attributed to thermoregulatory failure secondary to MS. No other cause was identified. The patient's partner who was a physics teacher, designed a system to monitor and treat the hypothermic episodes at home, thus avoiding hospital admission.
The system consisted of a temperature sensor to continuously transmit recordings via Bluetooth to a mobile device and an electric heated motorcycle jacket. In the event of a decrease in temperature, the heated jacket would be manually turned on. The patient has not had a further admission to hospital with hypothermic episodes with the use of this system.
Hypothermic episodes are known to cause worsening of neurological function and can lead to coma and death. This simple and cheap monitoring system has helped reduce the risk of adverse outcomes and avoidable hospital admissions.
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