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Diseases of high terrestrial altitudes 

Diseases of high terrestrial altitudes
Diseases of high terrestrial altitudes

Andrew J. Pollard

, Buddha Basnyat

, and David R. Murdoch


August 28, 2014: This chapter has been re-evaluated and remains up-to-date. No changes have been necessary.

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date: 28 September 2021

Ascent to altitudes above 2500 m leads to exposure to hypobaric hypoxia. This affects performance on first arrival at high altitude and disturbs sleep, but physiological changes occur over time to defend arterial and tissue oxygenation and allow the individual to adjust. This process of acclimatization includes (1) an increase in the rate and depth of breathing; and (2) an increase in red cell mass, and in red cell 2,3-diphosphoglycerate. Acclimatization is no longer possible at extreme altitude (>5800 m) and the exposed individual will gradually deteriorate....

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