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Age comparison of changes in local warm and cold sensitivity due to whole body cooling

journal contribution
posted on 06.01.2022, 15:50 authored by Nicole Coull, Simon HodderSimon Hodder, George HavenithGeorge Havenith
Purpose: This study investigated the influence of whole body cooling on local thermal sensitivity to warm (40°C) and cold (20°C) stimuli in 10 young (age: 24 ± 2 yrs) and 10 older males (age: 69 ± 4 yrs).
Methods: Local warm and cold sensitivity was assessed at eight body regions using a 25 cm2 pressure controlled thermal probe after 40 min of whole body exposure to a thermoneutral (NEUT: 25°C/40% RH) and a cold (COLD: 12°C/50% RH) environment. Gastrointestinal temperature (Tgi), mean and local skin temperature, heart rate, whole body thermal sensation and comfort, and skin blood flow were also measured.
Results: Whole body cooling blunted local cold sensitivity but warm sensitivity was maintained in both age groups. Furthermore, a significant age-related decline (from young to older group) in sensitivity to a warm stimulus was observed in both NEUT and COLD conditions. Older males also had a greater ∆Tgi compared to the young but had similar thermal sensation and comfort responses.
Conclusion: The observed interaction effect of local cold stimulation and whole body cooling may be related to both stimuli triggering similar TRP channels, whereas the lack of interaction between local warm stimuli and whole body cooling may be related to these two stimuli triggering different TRP channels. The findings reiterate the potential thermoregulatory risks (e.g. cold injury and hypothermia) associated with ageing, even with such short exposure times.

History

School

  • Design and Creative Arts

Department

  • Design

Published in

Journal of Thermal Biology

Volume

104

Publisher

Elsevier BV

Version

AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Rights holder

© Elsevier

Publisher statement

This paper was accepted for publication in the journal Journal of Thermal Biology and the definitive published version is available at https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jtherbio.2021.103174

Acceptance date

19/12/2021

Publication date

2021-12-22

Copyright date

2022

ISSN

0306-4565

Language

en

Depositor

Prof George Havenith. Deposit date: 22 December 2021

Article number

103174