Altitude Sickness :
Information On Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS)
When trekking in Nepal Himalayas “Altitude related
Problems” are the important factors to be considered
because there is always a real danger of mild to serious
problems related to altitude and it is important that trekkers
understand that they will be affected to a greater or lesser
extent when they ascend to altitudes over about 3000 meters.
Altitude sickness, often known as Acute Mountain Sickness
(AMS) and it means the effect of altitude on those who ascend
too rapidly to elevation above 3000 meters. The victim can
develop severe symptoms very rapidly if the mild effects
I advise my clients to remember the following suggestion
when you are on trekking in the high altitude areas above
3000 meters. The following are the basic symptoms of the
altitude sickness and to avoid such sickness I recommend
few important points.
1. Basic Symptoms :
(I) Loss of appetite
(II) Sleep disturbance
(III) Difficult to pass urine
2. Medium Symptoms :
(I) Headache which is bad
(II) Irregular breathing
(IV) Mild weakness
3. Serious Symptoms :
(I) Slight swelling of hands and face
(II) Cannot stand upright without swaying while eyes are
(III) Can hear gurgling sound in the chest.
(IV) Zero energy.
I want to request my clients that please feel free to discuss
any kind of trouble with me whether it is simply gastro-intestinal
or altitude related.
What to do about Altitude
Altitude illness can be prevented by acclimatization; that
is, by a graduate rate of ascent (not more than 400 –
500 meters), allowing sufficient rest at various intermediate
altitudes. The dry air of the mountains tends to dehydrate
you so an increased fluid intake is necessary. Try to drink
at least four liters of water a day. On the trail you can
drink hot garlic soup that will help you to some extent.
When we reach to our destination it is better to make some
hiking up to a bit higher point and come down to the camp
or hotel. This is a really good way to get acclimatization.
You may take a Diamox 250mg tablets the night before flying
/ going to altitude. After the symptoms will often disappear
and the trek can be resumed.
If you feel obviously suffering from the serious symptoms
of AMS then descent should not be delayed even if it means
going down in dark. In such case, should an emergency situation
arise, horse, or porter will be arranged; or I myself carry
you and run to lower (descend) altitudes. There are 3 radios
in Namche Bazaar, Doctors at Khunde hospital in the Everest
Area and HRA Clinics and in some trekking areas also has
the Gamow Bag. The hospital or the clinic will take fees
or charges for such services. I can arrange for immediate
evacuation, by horse or helicopter, depending on the severity
of the case.