Jump to content


Do you want up to date information about Scleroderma? Check out our Medical pages at www.sclero.org for all your Scleroderma questions!


High Altitude A Risk Factor?


  • Please log in to reply
9 replies to this topic

#1 Guest_Jennifer_*

Guest_Jennifer_*
  • Guests

Posted 12 January 2007 - 09:17 PM

Has anyone read anything on this site that states living at high altitude, especially with ILD, is a risk factor with Scleroderma? I have Interstital Lung Disease and on supplemental o2 and would like to read more studies on this.
Thanks a lot,
Jennifer

#2 janey

janey

    Platinum Member

  • ISN Support Specialists
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,118 posts
  • Location:New Mexico

Posted 13 January 2007 - 04:33 AM

Jennifer,
I couldn't find anything specifically on ISN about altitude vs. ILD, but there is stuff out there so I'll put it together and send you a PM.

Yes, altitude does effect both PH and ILD. Two things happen with an increase in altitude:
atmospheric pressure drops
O2 saturation drops

The percent of O2 is the same regardless of the altitude (approx 20%), but because the "amount of air" decreases as we go up, the "amount" of oxygen is less therefore if your O2 sat is already low it continues to decreases the higher you go. Additional supplemental O2 may be needed.

An increase in altitude also affects PH. In fact, high altitude living (greater than 8000 ft) can cause PH.

I hope this helps. I'll send you some articles this afternoon.

Big Hugs,
Janey Willis
ISN Support Specialist
(Retired) ISN Assistant Webmaster
(Retired) ISN News Director
(Retired) ISN Technical Writer for Training Manuals
International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

#3 Guest_Jennifer_*

Guest_Jennifer_*
  • Guests

Posted 13 January 2007 - 04:41 AM

Thanks Janey! As you know, I am about to move back to the mile high city, Denver, and I am getting nervous over my decision. Right now I am at around 1200 and my oxygen saturation is great. I notice a difference from living in Denver in that I don't get so breathless over simple activities (like a few stairs) at lower altitude. I guess that's not a big deal as long as I keep o2 on. I just love not having to use it in Arkansas, when I run errands. When I go without it in Denver, I feel like I can see the damage I'm doing to my body!
Thanks again,
Jennifer

#4 Sweet

Sweet

    Platinum Member

  • ISN Support Specialists
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,890 posts

Posted 13 January 2007 - 05:51 AM

Hey Jen,

I think it is so wonderful that you are getting married and have found a super sweet guy. But also remember your health is most important. I know you mentioned he has a good job etc, but sometimes a family has to make sacrifices for each other, especially when it significantly affects ones quality of life, if not life itself! Please make sure you are talking about your concerns to your fiancee and that you make these decisions conscientiously and TOGETHER.

Janey gave you some good info. and it sounds like she is planning on giving you more, but I think you know the move is going to change your health, so PLEASE take care of yourself. :)

Just worried about you hon.
Warm and gentle hugs,

Pamela
ISN Support Specialist
International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

#5 barefut

barefut

    Platinum Member

  • Bloggers
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,159 posts
  • Location:NW Washington

Posted 13 January 2007 - 06:23 AM

Jenninfer,

I second what Sweet said.

Love, Barefut

#6 Guest_Jennifer_*

Guest_Jennifer_*
  • Guests

Posted 13 January 2007 - 11:54 AM

I have been worried about moving. I feel very good living at the altitude that I live in now and don't want to make a huge mistake. We have discussed moving in the future to a place better for me, but at this time, it's not practical...and wouldn't work for us at all. So, I have no choice but to move right now if I want to be with my soon to be husband. He loves Colorado so I know this is hard for him but he does understand. I am just worried about now...and the next few years it will take to move. I don't know what I'm doing...just another pitfall of this disease that makes me so mad. It's not just the managing of the disease, it's having to turn your life around. I appreciate everyone's thoughts and I'll take more advice. I really wish I were more educated on the effects of altitude and lungs, and likelyhood of PAH development because of living at higher altitude. Another question I have is, I do not believe oxygen supplement alone is enough to remedy living at high altitude....since the problem I have is in the gas exchange and getting enough o2 to other body parts.
Thanks.
Jen

#7 Sweet

Sweet

    Platinum Member

  • ISN Support Specialists
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,890 posts

Posted 13 January 2007 - 12:09 PM

We will wish the best for you!
Warm and gentle hugs,

Pamela
ISN Support Specialist
International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

#8 barefut

barefut

    Platinum Member

  • Bloggers
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,159 posts
  • Location:NW Washington

Posted 13 January 2007 - 12:13 PM

Jen,

Call your pulm doctor and just ask him what he thinks, especially regarding your diffusion and altitude.

By the way, Western Washington has everything CO. has and more (and we're at sea level. ;) )

Best wishes in everything,
Barefut

#9 Guest_Jennifer_*

Guest_Jennifer_*
  • Guests

Posted 13 January 2007 - 01:09 PM

I just left a message with my pulmonologist and PAH specialist, both in Denver, so we'll see what they have to say. I think I'll order a pizza.


Smiles, Kisses and Hugs,
Jen

#10 nan

nan

    Gold Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 649 posts

Posted 13 January 2007 - 01:44 PM

Jennifer,
I am so sorry that you are having to deal with this at such a happy time in your life. I think everybody has given you great advice! Hang in there!
Nan