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Thread: cold clammy sweaty leg. What is going on?

  1. #1

    cold clammy sweaty leg. What is going on?

    Every night my hubby has cold clammy sweaty legs. Why is this happening? Does this happen to anyone else?
    Nurse Jenny

  2. #2
    Sounds all to familiar. I had the same problem. I was told that sweating was almost impossible below the injury level. But it did. Mine fortuanatly stopped a few months back. I'm only 8 months post. It really had me stumped. Hope the same happens for your husband.
    Does he have a real problem with ireggular body temputure???

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    I sweated away last winter-above and below my level of injury. It stopped about the time I got my TLSO off. I now get goosebumps when I am cold and still sometimes sweat-mainly upper legs. I have trouble w/ tempuratue control-mainly cold all the time.

  4. #4
    Has anyone explained autonamic dysreflexia(sp?), or AD to you? This is something that can be caused by full bladder or bowel or several other causes such as clothing wrinkles.

    In the past few months though, I've been doing the same, sweating quite a bit below my injury level. I've been injured for nearly 23 years and haven't had that happen before. It looks like my cause may be due to some med changes, but you may want to check into AD possibilities for your husband when this happens.
    C2/3 quad since February 20, 1985.

  5. #5
    Jenny, if I recall correctly, your husbands level of injury is the same as mine. Yes, he will have cold legs. The circulation has slowed quite a bit, and thus the cold legs. Im also gonna guess he has swelled feet. He needs to exercise his legs. I at first used a flexerciser bike, before I was introduced to FES bike. Also, his meds might be messing with him. I know that when I was taking zanaflex and baclofen, and misc. pain meds, my whole body shivered with cold. The sweat, I will tell you, is a good thing at this time. I didnt sweat below my injury for a long time. Try a heating pad ON TOP OF HIS LEGS, not under his body, on low. This will help some, and he needs to also elevate his feet some. Jus my 2 cents. I know all injuries are different, but this has been my experience.

  6. #6
    Please!!! No heating pads, hot water bottles, or even electric blankets where he has no sensation. I have seen some horrendous burns.

    Flannel sheets are a good way to warm up, with a down comforter (light weight for turns, but very warm). Use a duvet cover instead of a top sheet.

    The autonomic dysfunction that occurs below the level of injury (essentially a disconnect from the brain) can cause abnormal vasoconstriction and vasodilation in the legs, and you can have either no sweating or inappropriate sweating too. You can often get mottled skin and even some cyanosis. Check pedal or posterior tibialis pulses if worried (I know you are a nurse) just to be sure that circulation is sufficient.


  7. #7
    One side of his body will be warm at times and the other cold. Swelling is a big issue also.
    Nurse Jenny

  8. #8
    Yes, this is common, as above. Wearing compression (TED) hose will help the edema, as well elevating his legs at night. Edema still there in the AM is much more concerning and should be investigated as a possible DVT.


  9. #9
    He has a stage 3 decub on his left heel also that is not healing at all. He has been on chloraphyl Bid and it is almost to the bone. Any suggestions, I disagree with his Dr. on the wound treatment.
    Nurse Jenny

  10. #10
    I'll hafta diagree with the nurse on the heating pad. as long as its on top, and not under you, it will be fine. Please be aware to make sure temp setting is on low, and that its not left on overnight. Sorry, SCI-Nurse. Main point here is vigilance. Pad on top of skin, and cognizant of time on part of body. Yes, flannel covers are good, as are down filled covers. But when first getting into bed is when it seems body temp is coldest...

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