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Wilderness Environ Med. 2011 Dec;22(4):316-20. doi: 10.1016/j.wem.2011.07.002. Epub 2011 Oct 7.

Improving sleep at altitude: a comparison of therapies.

Author information

1
University of Utah College of Nursing and School of Medicine, Salt Lake City, UT 84112, USA. gwrodway@hotmail.com

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

This study aimed to compare 3 treatment modalities during sleep at an altitude of 5300 m to identify strategies for reducing the incidence of periodic breathing at high altitude.

METHODS:

Fifteen trekkers, with identical ascent profiles and no signs or symptoms of altitude illness, served as subjects. All study participants arrived at 5300 m after a gradual ascent from 1300 m. On their second night at 5300 m, subjects were randomly assigned (with a computer-based random assignment procedure) to 1 of 4 different treatment groups: control (n = 4); 1 L/min O(2) via a demand system during sleep (n = 3); 1 L/min O(2)/CO(2) mix (1.5% CO(2)) via a demand system during sleep (n = 4); or 125 mg acetazolamide 30 minutes before bedtime (n = 4). Heart rate, respiration rate, blood oxygen saturation, tidal volume, minute volume, and apnea hypopnea index were measured.

RESULTS:

Upon comparing the 4 groups, there were no statistically significant differences between the variables. One-way analysis of variance indicated a trend toward statistical significance for SaO(2) between groups (F = 2.9, P = .08), and Tukey Honestly Significant Difference (HSD) post hoc tests indicated a trend in the SaO(2) difference between the 1 L/min oxygen and control groups (P = .07). While 1-way analysis of variance suggested no difference for respiratory rate between groups (F = 2.5, P = .1), Tukey HSD indicated a trend in statistical difference of the respiratory rate between 1 L/min O(2) and 1 L/min O(2)/CO(2) mixture (P = .08).

CONCLUSIONS:

These statistical trends found between control and treatment groups indicate that further study is warranted.

PMID:
21982758
DOI:
10.1016/j.wem.2011.07.002
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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