Mar 7, 2008

Medication and dosage considerations in the prophylaxis and treatment of high-altitude illness

Chest
Andrew M Luks, Erik R Swenson

Abstract

With increasing numbers of people traveling to high altitude for work or pleasure, there is a reasonable chance that many of these travelers have preexisting medical conditions or are receiving various medications at the time of their sojourn. As with all travelers to high altitude, they are at risk for altitude illnesses such as acute mountain sickness, high-altitude cerebral edema, and high-altitude pulmonary edema. While there are clear recommendations for pharmacologic measures to prevent or treat these illnesses, these recommendations are oriented toward healthy individuals and do not take into account the presence of preexisting medical conditions. In this review, we consider how the choice and dose of the medications used in the management of altitude illness-acetazolamide, dexamethasone, nifedipine, tadalafil, sildenafil, and salmeterol-are affected by a patient's underlying medical conditions. We discuss the indications and current dosing recommendations for individuals without underlying disease, and then consider how drug selection or dosing regimens will be affected by the presence of renal insufficiency, hepatic insufficiency, other important medical conditions, and the potential for serious drug interactions. We i...Continue Reading

  • References65
  • Citations52

Citations

Mentioned in this Paper

Antimalarial [EPC]
Pulmonary Edema
Nifedipine
Primary Prevention
Tadalafil
Acute Mountain Sickness
Antibiotic throat preparations
Antifungal Antibiotics, Topical
Hepatic Insufficiency
Acetazolamide

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