Altitude Sickness

ExitCare ImageAltitude sickness happens when you go to a high place without giving your body time to adjust. This is a medical emergency. Altitude sickness can be a life-threatening problem.


  • If you must exercise, do so lightly for the first 24 to 36 hours after treatment.

  • Drink enough fluids to keep your pee (urine) clear or pale yellow.

  • Eat small, light meals.

  • Avoid smoking, calming medicines (sedatives), and alcohol.

  • Stay in low places.

  • Have someone stay with you until you feel normal.

  • Keep all doctor visits as told.

To prevent altitude sickness during future trips:

  • Go to high places slowly.

  • Go to high places during the day and return to low places at night.

  • Give your body a few days to adjust in high places before doing physical activities.

  • Ask your doctor about medicines you can take to prevent altitude sickness.


  • You feel short of breath at rest or when you are active.

  • You have chest pain or tightness.

  • You have a fast heartbeat.

  • You have a severe headache.

  • You have a severe cough.

  • You have trouble walking.

  • You have trouble concentrating.

  • You feel confused.


  • Understand these instructions.

  • Will watch your condition.

  • Will get help right away if you are not doing well or get worse.