Respiratory stimulants and sleep periodic breathing at high altitude: Almitrine versus acetazolamide

P. H. Hackett, R. C. Roach, G. L. Harrison, Robert Blair Schoene, W. J. Mills

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

89 Scopus citations

Abstract

We studied the effects of almitrine, acetazolamide, and placebo on the hypoxic ventilatory response (HVR), sleep periodic breathing, and arterial oxygen saturation (Sa(O2)) in 4 healthy climbers. In a laboratory on Denali (Mt. McKinley) at 4,400 m (P(B) = 440 mm Hg), we used a double-blind, randomized, three-way crossover design. The HVR was measured during the waking state. Periodic breathing and SA(O2)% were measured during 3-h sleep studies. Almitrine and acetazolamide both increased Sa(O2)% during sleep, although almitrine increased periodic breathing, whereas acetazolamide decreased periodic breathing. The HVR (ΔV̇E/ΔSa(O2)%) was doubled with almitrine (p < 0.05), but unchanged with acetazolamide. The HVR was positively related to periodic breathing (p < 0.05). We conclude that periodic breathing during sleep at high altitude is related to the hypoxic ventilatory response, and that acetazolamide is a superior agent to almitrine for ameliorating periodic breathing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)896-906
Number of pages11
JournalAmerican Review of Respiratory Disease
Volume135
Issue number4 I
StatePublished - Jun 12 1987

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine

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