Nepal Govt. Reged. No:39829/2005

Altitude mountain sickness

Altitude mountain sickness

Altitude mountain sickness an issue that you should know

It is known as Altitude Mountain Sickness. it is hard to know who gets altitude mountain sickness. There are no specific factors of altitude sickness. Some people get it and some don’t, and some people are more susceptible than others. Most people can get up to 10000 feet (3048 meters) with minimal effect.
Symptoms seem due to your body not adapting well to having less oxygen at high altitudes. At 18,000 ft (5,500m), there is 1/2 of the oxygen. in the top of Mt.Everest, there is 1/3 of Oxygen. The body tries to adapt to lower amounts of oxygen so you breathe faster and deeper. There is also an increase in heart rate. Both of this factor try to bring more oxygen to the body. There is a wide individual susceptibility to altitude which seems to be genetically determined – how well someone does at altitude seems related to how well they breathe at altitude.

Sypmtoms of Altitude mountain sickness

Lack of oxygen in a body causes fluid leakage and accumulation in between cells in the brain and lungs. Symptoms can be mild or severe. Mild symptoms of Acute Mountain Sickness or AMS are a headache, loss of appetite, nausea, fatigue, lack of sleep and dizziness. If symptoms worsen then the person must descend to a lower altitude as soon as possible.
Severe symptoms are AMS progresses due to fluid accumulation in the brain and the lungs. These conditions are known as High Altitude Cerebral Edema (HACE) or High Altitude Pulmonary Edema (HAPE). HACE symptoms make mental confusion, hallucinations, and difficulty with balance and coordination. As the symptoms worsen, unconsciousness or coma can occur which can lead to death. HAPE results in shortness of breath while at rest, extreme fatigue, a cough which may be dry or productive with frothy blood-tinged sputum and chest tightness.

Prevention of Altitude mountain sickness

If is possible, don’t fly or dive too high altitude. Start walking from below 10000 feet.
If you do fly or drive, do not over-exert yourself or move higher for the first 25 Hour.
If you are going above 10000 feet, just walk up 1000 feet (305m) per day
“Climb higher and sleep lower “This is maxim used by climbers. You can climb more than 1000 feet (305 m) in a day as long as you come back down and sleep at lower altitude.
If you get’s symptoms of moderate altitude illness, don’t go higher until symptoms decrease.
If symptoms increase at a high level, go down, down.
Stay properly hydrated Acclimatization is often accompanied by fluid loss, so you need to drink lots of fluids to remain properly hydrated (at least 3-4 liter per day) Urine output should be copious and clear.
Take it easy; don’t over-exert yourself when you first get up to altitude. Light activity during the days better than sleeping because respiration decreases during sleep, exacerbating the symptoms.
Avoid tobacco and alcohol and others depressant drugs including barbiturates, tranquilizers, and sleeping pills. This depressant further decreased during sleep resulting in a worsening of the symptoms.