Patients with hypoventilation may need supplemental oxygen on-board flights

August 4, 2014

Severely overweight people who suffer from hypoventilation can have abnormally low levels of oxygen (hypoxaemia) in their blood during air travel as a result of reduced atmospheric pressure in the cabin of aircrafts.

In a recent Respirology study, even patients diagnosed with who were in the care of specialist and had normal daytime blood oxygen levels were still at risk of hypoxaemia when flying.

"The findings suggest that it is advisable for all hypoventilation syndrome patients to do a hypoxic challenge test before to be better prepared for the possibility that supplementary oxygen on-board or non-invasive ventilation is needed," said lead author Dr. Masood Ali.

Explore further: Sleep apnoea linked with increased risk of cancer death

More information: Ali, M., Smith, I. E., Gulati, A. and Shneerson, J. M. (2014), Pre-flight assessment in patients with obesity hypoventilation syndrome. Respirology. DOI: 10.1111/resp.12353

Related Stories

Mountain climbing without the headaches caused by altitude

April 7, 2014

By monitoring blood flow in the brains of six climbers scaling Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, German medical researchers have identified a possible way to prevent the headaches that are a common feature of altitude sickness. ...

Recommended for you

Monkeys in Asia harbor virus from humans, other species

November 19, 2015

When it comes to spreading viruses, bats are thought to be among the worst. Now a new study of nearly 900 nonhuman primates in Bangladesh and Cambodia shows that macaques harbor more diverse astroviruses, which can cause ...

One-step test for hepatitis C virus infection developed

November 14, 2015

UC Irvine Health researchers have developed a cost-effective one-step test that screens, detects and confirms hepatitis C virus (HCV) infections. Dr. Ke-Qin Hu, director of hepatology services, will present findings at the ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.