Deaths in the Turkish Hamam (Hot Bath)

Eren B., FEDAKAR R., Turkmen N., Akan O.

BRATISLAVA MEDICAL JOURNAL-BRATISLAVSKE LEKARSKE LISTY, vol.110, no.11, pp.697-700, 2009 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 110 Issue: 11
  • Publication Date: 2009
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.697-700
  • Bursa Uludag University Affiliated: Yes


Hamam (Hot Bath) culture is prevalent worldwide. The high temperature and humidity of these places have multiple effects on human health. The aim of this study was to investigate the demographic characteristics, autopsy findings and causes of death of cases who died in hamam and underwent medicolegal autopsies. The study was performed on 15 cases who experienced sudden death or died suspiciously in hamam and autopsied between January 1999 and December 2004. Eleven cases were men and 4 were women. Mean age was 69.5 +/- 3.1 and median age was 74. Eight cases were found dead in a bathtub or pool whereas seven were found out of water. Six of the cases older than 65 died in winter months. The causes of death were recorded as acute cardiac failure in 13 cases, pneumonia and cardiac failure in one, pneumonia and acute pancreatitis in the last case. Elderly patients with cardiac failure and coronary heart disease experience significant health problems in saunas and hamams. They should avoid this tradition unless approved by their physicians (Ref. 35). Full Text (Free, PDF)