Mountaineers measure lowest human blood oxygen levels on record
Coincident with the widespread adoption of PSA screening, the proportion of American men diagnosed with organ-confined, low risk prostate cancer has increased significantly during the last two decades. In a study scheduled for publication in the February 2009 issue of The Journal of Urology, researchers report that for low-income men, the opposite is true, with
Full Post: Low income men diagnosed more often with advanced prostate cancer
The lowest ever levels of oxygen in humans have been reported in climbers on an expedition led by UCL (University College London) doctors.
The world-first measurements of blood oxygen levels in climbers near the top of Mount Everest, published in this week’s New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM), could eventually help critical care doctors to re-evaluate treatment strategies in some long-term patients with similarly low levels of blood oxygen.
The Caudwell Xtreme Everest team of climbing doctors made the measurements by taking blood from leg arteries close to the summit of Mount Everest at 8,400 metres above sea-level. The team climbed with oxygen tanks, then removed their masks 20 minutes prior to testing to equilibrate their lungs with the low-oxygen atmosphere. The team were unable to make the measurement on the summit of Everest as conditions were too severe, with temperatures at minus 25 degrees centrigrade and winds above 20 knots. Having descended a short distance from the summit, the doctors removed their gloves, unzipped their down suits and drew blood from the femoral artery in the groin. Blood collected from four team members was then carried back down the mountain to be analysed within two hours at a science laboratory set up at the team’s camp at 6,400 metres on Everest.
The purpose of the study was to establish what has long been suspected - that high-altitude climbers have incredibly low levels of oxygen in their blood, which at sea-level would only be seen in patients close to death. The expedition found the average arterial oxygen level to be 3.28 kilopascals or kPa (with the lowest value being 2.55 kPa); the normal value in humans is 12-14 kPa and patients with a level below 8 kPa are considered critically ill. Based on calculations of the expected level of oxygen in the blood, the authors also speculate that accumulation of fluid in the lungs as a result of the high altitude might have contributed to the low oxygen levels.
Caudwell Xtreme Everest expedition leader Dr Mike Grocott, a UCL Senior Lecturer in Critical Care Medicine, said: “By observing healthy individuals at high altitude where oxygen is scarce, we can learn about physiological changes that can improve critical care at the hospital bedside, because low oxygen levels are an almost universal problem in critical care. These extraordinary low levels of oxygen found in high-altitude climbers may cause doctors looking after critically ill patients to revaluate treatment goals in some patients who have been ill for some time and might have adapted to low levels of oxygen in the blood. However, our findings will need further careful evaluation before they can be translated into clinical practice. We hope that ongoing research will eventually lead to better treatments for patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), cystic fibrosis, emphysema, septic shock, ‘blue baby’ syndrome and other critical illnesses.”
A new study by researchers at UC Davis Medical Center suggests that the sudden unexplained deaths of some epilepsy patients may be a result of their brains not telling their bodies to breathe during seizures. “Significant drops in blood oxygen levels are more common than we thought in patients with partial seizures,” said study senior
Full Post: Drops in blood oxygen levels may be key to sudden death in some epilepsy patients
Scientists have identified a gene critical to lung maturation in newborns and the production of surfactant, which lines lung tissues and prevents the lungs from collapsing. In a study posted online by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), investigators at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center deleted the Foxm1 gene in embryonic mice.
Full Post: Foxm1 gene mutation may cause immature lungs in newborns
If you want to attain a good health, then simply you have to spend your precious time and will have to do some hard work. Without working hard, you cannot get a healthy body. Especially those people who are fat and want to reduce their weight must follow a specific plan so that they can
Full Post: Useful tips to make the body healthy and fit
A study in the Dec. 15 issue of the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine suggests that screening type 2 diabetes patients for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and treating those who have OSA with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy could improve the management of their hyperglycemia and might favorably influence their long-term prognosis. Results
Full Post: Continuous positive airway pressure improves sleeping glucose levels in type 2 diabetics with obstructive sleep apnea
Healthy adults with higher levels of phosphate in the blood are more likely to have increased levels of calcium in the coronary arteries-a key indicator of atherosclerosis and future cardiovascular disease risk, reports a study in the February 2009 issue of the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (JASN). “Phosphate level may represent a
Full Post: Higher levels of blood phosphate may be a previously unidentified and modifiable cardiovascular risk factor