Differential heating of trunk and extremities

Effects on thermoregulation mechanisms
  • M. Heising
  • J. Werner


Experiments in which the whole human body was heated or cooled are compared with others in which one extremtiy (arm or leg) was simultaneously cooled or heated. With a warm load on the rest of the body resulting in general sweating, a cold load on one extremity did not evoke local shivering; with general body cooling, heating one limb did not stop the shivering. Skin temperatures of the other parts of the body were not influenced by warming or cooling one extremity. Evaporative heat loss was influenced by local, mean skin and core temperature, whereas shivering did not depend on local temperature, and vasomotor control seemed to be controlled predominantly by central temperatures. A cold load on an extremity during whole body heating in most cases induced an oscillatory behaviour of core temperature and of the evaporative heat loss from the body and the extremity.

It is assumed that local, mean skin and core temperatures influence the three autonomous effector systems to very different degree.


Skin temperature Core temperature Metabolism Evaporation Vasomotor control 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. Heising
    • 1
  • J. Werner
    • 1
  1. 1.Institut für Physiologie, AG ElektrophysiologieRuhr-UniversitÄtBochumFederal Republic of Germany

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