ALTITUDE SICKNESS IN TIBET

   
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 TIBET ALTITUDE SICKNESS
IT'S THE TOP, THE ROOF, THE HIGHEST PLACE ON EARTH! BE PREPARED FOR ALTITUDE SICKNESS!

 BEST TREATMENT
GO BACK DOWN! 

   
   
The pleasures of trekking or even vacationing in the world's highest mountain ranges cannot be overstated especially when we are talking about Tibet. Neither can the dangers! Altitude sickness can occur in some people as low as 8,000 feet, but serious symptoms do not usually occur until over 12,000 feet, however exceptions are the rule. No matter your age or your shape, there is no way to tell if you will get it until you go. Even then it is not the height that is important, rather the speed in which you ascended to that altitude.
   
 Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS)  High Altitude Defined
When acclimatization lags significantly behind ascent, various symptoms occur. Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS) represents the body's intolerance of the low oxygen environment at one's current elevation.  There are many degrees of AMS. See below High Altitude:
1500 - 3500 meters (5000 - 11500 feet)
Very High Altitude:
3500 - 5500 meters (11500 - 18000 feet)
Extreme Altitude:
Above 5500 meters (18000 feet)
   

TIBET ALTITUDE CHART 

Place
Altitude
Place
Altitude
Lhasa
3658 m
12001 ft
Nyingchi/Bayi Town
3000 m
9843 ft
Nagqu
4507 m
14787 ft
Shannon/Tsetang
3500 m
11483 ft
Qamdo/Chamdo
3205 m
10515 ft
Shigatse
3836 m
12585 ft
Nam-tso/Damshung
4200 m
13780 ft
Gyantse
4040 m
13255 ft
Pome, Nyingchi
2750 m
9022 ft
Tingri
4300 m
14108 ft
Amdo
4800 m
15748 ft
Rima/Zayui
2325 m
7628 ft
   

 

Helpful Hints to Avoid Altitude Sickness
Exercise before going to Tibet - get fit as possible. Even fit people experience AMS.
Take "pearls" and vitamins. Best not to have a cold in high altitude environments.
Get a full nights rest before flying to Lhasa.
You may acclimate easier by taking the long fast train from Beijing.
Plan one full day in Lhasa to acclimate before heavy sightseeing or side trips.
While acclimating, take it easy, walk slowly, rest, drink water.
Gradual assertion is the key. If you start to feel odd, wait or descend. DO NOT GO HIGHER.
Bring a prescription for Altitude Sickness with you, as well as a first-aid kit.
Take oxygen along. You can buy a supply in any sporting goods store.
   Symptoms of High Altitude Issues
  Headache
Light headedness
Feeling like you can't get enough air
Hyperventilation (breathing fast)
Shortness of breath during exertion
Decreased coordination
Increased urination
Nausea or vomiting
Swelling of face or hands
Changed breathing pattern at night, gasping
Awakening frequently at night
Feelings of panic, heart palpitations
Strange and vivid dreams  
 Study about AMS Before You Go  
There are various degrees of AMS not covered on this page. It is very important that you know the signs and symptoms of altitude sickness and the degrees. AMS can cause death and has many times. Print out some information about AMS to take with you in your medical kit. You will not remember all the details about AMS when you are in the middle of a journey. Keep this handy, it WILL come in useful for you and/or another. Here are some good links: 

Travel Doctor
Outdoor Action Guide to High Altitude: Acclimatization and Illnesses
All About Altitude Illness
The High Altitude Medicine Guide

 
   
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
       

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DISCLAIMER: The data on this website is the collaborative experience by both travel professionals and non-professionals, contributions, and research of various websites,  books,  documents, research, articles, associates, attorneys,  etc. The information on this site may or may not be accurate or up to date. The primary purpose of this site is education and service. We do not advocate any specific course of action, but offer ideas to think about. What you do with this information and any course of action you decide to take, if any, is entirely your responsibility. We wish you happy travels.