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Could Olfactory Dysfunction Help Us Diagnose Acute Mountain Sickness?

Published:January 05, 2023DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wem.2022.11.002
      From a clinician’s point of view, the principal limitation of the current methods of acute mountain sickness (AMS) assessment is reliance on self-reporting of AMS symptoms, which can be heavily influenced by multiple factors, including psychological factors.
      • Ruffini R.
      • Di Giulio C.
      • Verratti V.
      • Pokorski M.
      • Fanò-Illic G.
      • Mazzatenta A.
      Adaptation of olfactory threshold at high altitude.
      Objective measurement of maladaptation to hypobaric hypoxia at high altitude would be clearly preferred. Heart rate and oxygen saturation values, albeit measured on most expeditions, are not diagnostic criteria for AMS. Their usability to detect or predict the occurrence of AMS by nonmedical personnel is, at best, limited. High-altitude medicine is still searching for a reliable, objective way to assess AMS that is easy to use even without medical training, inexpensive, and lightweight.
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