Short Note On Barometric Pressure At Pikes Peak

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• Generally, barometric pressure at sea level is 760 mmHg. • Generally, barometric pressure at Pikes Peak is approx. 450 mmHg (altitude approx 14,115 ft.) • At this high altitude there will be a decreased PiO2, which will lead to decreased PAO2 and PaO2 tensions. The decreased air density, humidity and temperature at Pike’s Peak can lead to water loss, ventilatory changes and alternations in pulmonary hemodynamics. Decreases in pulmonary vasoconstriction through decreases alveolar oxygen tension, as well as increases in pulmonary vascular resistance and pulmonary artery pressure, are seen at this high altitude. • At higher altitudes respiration rate is increased which leads to increases in ventilation (possibly a five-fold increase from sea level). Chemoreceptors in the arterial blood vessels are stimulated to signal the brain to increase ventilation. The increase in ventilation is associated with increased breathing frequency and tidal volume. • Hypoxia is one of the major problems associated with this increase in altitude. This is due to the fact that the partial pressure of oxygen decreases proportionately with increases in altitude. Carbon dioxide that is continually excreted from the pulmonary blood to the alveoli along with water vaporizing in the inspired air from the respiratory surfaces dilute the oxygen in the alveoli which cause the oxygen concentration to decrease. • Due to being exposed to a low PO2 at such a fast rate after opening the plane door, acute

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