Toggle: English / Spanish
Cold intolerance is an abnormal sensitivity to a cold environment or cold temperatures.
Sensitivity to the cold; Intolerance to cold
Cold intolerance can be a symptom of a problem with metabolism.
Some people (often very thin women) do not tolerate cold temperatures because they have very little body fat to help keep them warm.
Some causes of cold intolerance are:
Follow the recommended therapy for treating the cause of the problem.
When to Contact a Medical Professional
Call your health care provider if you have long-term or extreme intolerance to cold.
What to Expect at Your Office Visit
Your provider will take a medical history and perform a physical examination.
Your provider's questions may include the following topics.
- Have you always been intolerant of cold?
- Has this developed recently?
- Has it been getting worse?
- Do you often feel cold when other people do not complain of being cold?
- What is your diet like?
- How is your general health?
- What are your height and weight?
- What other symptoms do you have?
Tests that may be performed include:
If your provider diagnoses cold intolerance, you may want to include the diagnosis in your personal medical record.
Kim M, Ladenson PW. Thyroid. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman's Cecil Medicine. 25th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2016:chap 226.
Sawka MN, O'Connor FG. Disorders due to heat and cold. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman's Cecil Medicine. 25th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2016:chap 109.
- Last reviewed on 1/31/2016
- Laura J. Martin, MD, MPH, ABIM Board Certified in Internal Medicine and Hospice and Palliative Medicine, Atlanta, GA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- 2013 A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.