FAQ Category: MOUNTAIN FAQS

I’m allergic to sulfa drugs. Should I take any other drug for preventing altitude illness ?

Allergic reactions to Acetazolamide are rare. People ascribe many different symptoms of allergies. If you are supposed allergy to sulfa drugs, consults your doctor. Consider taking a test dose of acetazolamide under the controlled clinical situation to determine whether or not have a true allergy. Dexamethosone is not recommended for preventing altitude illness in routine…

My doctor suggested I take a sleeping pill since restful sleep is said to be hard to come by at altitude. Is there anything wrong with that ?

Yes, sleeping pills were routinely prescribed by doctors a few decades ago to ensure a good sleep at altitude. Because they depress respiration, a critical factor in acclimatization, taking sleeping pills, sedatives,or tranquilizers is generally not recommended. That said there are some studies on agents such as temazepam that imply that they do not depress…

What about taking furosemide and other potent diuretics at altitude ?

Don’t. Initial studies supported their use in preventing altitude illness, but they have not been repeated successfully to justify using them at present. Significant side effects, including dehydration and fainting, result from their use. Faced with a serious case of HAPE, most clinicians who carry the drug will likely administer it.