Doctor insights on:
Low Altitude Sickness
What happens if I set a hyperbaric chamber to low oxygen saturation and used it would I still get altitude sickness?
Altitude sickness—also known as acute mountain sickness (ams), altitude illness, hypobaropathy, "the altitude bends", or soroche—is a pathological effect of high altitude on humans, caused by acute exposure to low partial pressure of oxygen at high altitude. It commonly occurs above 2, 400 ...Read more
Altitude sickness: Acute altitude sickness may be associated with any combination of the following symptoms: fatigue, headache, dizziness, insomnia, shortness of breath during exertion, nausea, decreased appetite, swelling of extremities. Altitude sickness develops when the rate of ascent into higher altitudes outpaces the body's ability to adjust to those altitudes. ...Read more
Tips for climbing: Climb the mountain gradually, stop for a day or two for every 2, 000 feet above 8, 000 feet . Sleep at a lower altitude when possible. Recognize early symptoms. If you plan on quickly climbing to a high altitude, ask your doctor about a medication called acetazolamide (diamox). ...Read more
Safe descent: The best treatment for altitude illness or altitude sickness is to decrease one's elevation by at least 1000 ft (quickly and safely.) if symptoms do not improve, one needs to descend another 1000 ft. If one has symptoms of hace (high altitude cerebral edema) or hape (high altitude pulmonary edema) contact search and rescue and arrange for emergent air evacuation. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Altitude sickness: Acute altitude sickness may be associated with any combination of the following symptoms: fatigue, headache, dizziness, insomnia, shortness of breath during exertion, nausea, decreased appetite, swelling of extremities. Altitude sickness develops when the rate of ascent into higher altitudes outpaces the body's ability to adjust to those altitudes. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Depends on degree: This depends on the degree of illness. But I do agree with my colleague that descent -- safely -- is the first thing to do. Additional needs might be oxygen, hydration, the diuretic diamox. If the person is confused, short of breath, and not moving well, this is severe and you're going to need help getting him/her down the mountain. Better to watch for early signs than let it get this far. ...Read more
I went trekking to a place over 5, 000 ft above sea level recently. I do not usually exercise n this is my 1st time. I did not get altitude sickness.Y?
Not surprising: At that altitude, true altitude sickness would not be as likely as at much higher altitudes. Also, people's proneness to altitude sickness does not depend on their usual exercise level. Things that can predict it are a history of having it before, doing vigorous execise before adjusting to the altitude, ascending too quickly, drinking alcohol, etc. Keep up your exercise! ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
How do I go from sea-level to sky high? I live at sea-level and am going to be hiking in colorado. What can I do to avoid altitude sickness?
Diamox.: If you are going to colorado in a short period of time to do some hiking you might see your physician to see if you are a candidate to use diamox, a medication which can prevent you from getting mountain sickness (altitude sickness). Have a good trip. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
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