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Feeling fatigue? Skip the shoveling and stay inside

Posted at 11:18 PM, Jan 31, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-31 23:18:33-05

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — Western New York will soon be in the process of digging out of a massive blizzard that caused feet of snow to hit the area.

That blizzard also caused three confirmed deaths.

"One was snow blowing... and another individual was shoveling" Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz said.

When conditions are cold, windy, and bitter, that is when it makes it more tough for physical activity. According to Dr. Colin McMahon, Chief Medical Officer at Buffalo General Hospital, that makes for an increase in hospital visits as a result of respiratory problems.

"During a storm a lot of folks exert themselves." Dr. McMahon said, "In the colder temperature you tend to do more and you're a little stiffer."

Buffalo General saw quite a few patients over the past two days come in with heart problems, mostly from people who have those respiratory issues to begin with.

"The cold air really wreaks havoc on their airwaves."

Some symptoms that could be felt include:
- Chest pain
- Left arm pain
- fatigue/exertion from a normal amount of work (abnormal fatigue)

Dr. McMahon says he often sees older men who refuse to seek help for these problems.

"A lot of them are guys who just ignore what their body is telling them." McMahon said, "A lot of the are stubborn."

His best advice? Put down the shovel, and call for someone to help. Better to be in the warmth than outside struggling as it is very difficult to shake off the fatigue in cold temperatures.