Difference between revisions of "High altitude pulmonary edema"

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{{High altitude DDX}}
 
{{High altitude DDX}}
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{{Pulmonary edema types}}
  
 
== Treatment ==
 
== Treatment ==

Revision as of 21:04, 24 March 2015

Background

  • Also known as HAPE
  1. Noncardiogenic pulm edema d/t increased microvascular pressure in the pulm circulation
  2. Most lethal of the altitude illnesses
  3. Occurs in <1/10,000 skiers in Colorado; 2-3% of Mt. McKinley climbers
  4. Typical pt is strong and fit; may not have symptoms of AMS before onset of HAPE
  5. Most commonly noticed on the second night at a new altitude

Risk Factors

  • Heavy exertion
  • Rapid ascent
  • Cold
  • Excessive salt ingestion
  • Use of a sleeping medication
  • Preexisting pulmonary HTN
  • Preexisting respiratory infection (children)
  • Previous history of HAPE

Clinical Features

  • Early
    • Dry cough, decreased exercise performance, dyspnea on exertion, localized rales
    • Resting SaO2 is low for the altitude and drops markedly w/ exertion (aids in the dx)
  • Late
    • Dyspnea at rest, marked weakness, productive cough, cyanosis, generalized rales
    • Tachycardia and tachypnea correlate with the severity of illness
    • Altered mental status and coma (from severe hypoxemia)

Workup

Differential Diagnosis

High Altitude Illnesses

Pulmonary Edema Types

Cardiogenic pulmonary edema

Noncardiogenic pulmonary edema

Treatment

  • Immediate descent is treatment of choice - minimize exertion
  • If cannot descend use combination of:
    • Supplemental O2 - Can completely resolve the pulmonary edema within 36-72hr
    • Hyperbaric bag
    • Keep pt warm (cold stress elevates pulm artery pressure)
    • Use expiratory positive airway pressure mask
    • Consider the medications listed below that are usually used for prevention

Disposition

  • Admission
    • Warranted for severe illness that does not respond immediately to descent
  • Discharge
    • Progressive clinical and X-ray improvement and a PaO2 of 60mmHg or SaO2>90%

Prevention

  • Nifedipine 20mg q8hr while ascending is effective prophylaxis in pts who had HAPE before
  • Tadalafil 10mg BID 24hr prior to ascent
  • Salmeterol inhaled BID

See Also

Source