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FIGURE 16-6 Approximate size, direction, and temporal changes that occur during acclimatization to 4,267 to 4,572 m (14,000 to 15,000 ft). SOURCE: Adapted from Houston (1982).

AMS is the most common manifestation of the altitude illnesses. It is associated with rapid exposure of the unacclimatized individual to altitudes above 3,048 m (10,000 ft). Symptoms usually start after several hours of exposure. The illness is self-limiting, remitting over the course of 3 to 7 days, depending on staging (temporary residence at an intermediate altitude) and any changes in elevation.

Prominent manifestations of the disorder are listed in Table 16-2. Sleep disorders characterized by periodic breathing are not uncommon. A factor not

TABLE 16-2 Symptoms of Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS) and High-Altitude Cerebral Edema (HACE)

AMS

HACE

Headache

Severe headache

Nausea

Nausea

Vomiting

Vomiting

Weakness

Extreme lassitude

Lassitude

Truncal ataxia

General malaise

Altered mental status

Decreased coordination

Ataxic gait

Dizziness

Generalized neurologic abnormalities

Oliguria

 



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