Altitude sickness is a change in a body due to high altitude, a decrease in atmospheric pressure makes breathing difficult due to less oxygen. Mainly, it happens above 3300 m (10,000 ft). This is a dangerous hazard that threatens the lives of trekkers if symptoms are ignored.
Signs and symptoms
- Sleepy but can’t sleep
- Drunken Gait, Delirious
- Loss of Appetite
- Reduced urine output
Avoiding high altitude sickness is always preferred. A trekker needs to follow these steps:
- Do not make a rapid ascent
- Avoid alcohol, sleeping pills and smoking
- Drink plenty of water
- Do not carry more than 10 kg
- Climb higher, sleep lower
- If Over 3000 m, ascend only 330 m a day
- Never travel alone
- Decent immediately
- Provide oxygen cylinders
- Gamow bags
- Diamox (125g) before dinner
Four Golden Rules
These are the rules for preventing altitude sickness:
- Be aware of the symptoms of altitude sickness.
- If you have mild symptoms do not proceed higher.
- If there are worsening symptoms descend immediately.
- Do not leave your team member behind if attempting a climb.