What Are the Symptoms and Treatment of High-Altitude Pulmonary Edema?

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  • Shortness of breath at rest
  • Cough
  • Weakness or decreased exercise performance
  • Chest tightness or congestion


The standard and most important treatment is to descend to a lower altitude as quickly as possible, preferably by at least 1000 meters. Oxygen should also be given if possible. Symptoms tend to quickly improve with descent, but more severe symptoms may continue for several days. The standard drug treatments are dexamethasone and nifedipine. Phosphodiesterase inhibitors such as sildenafil and tadalafil are also effective but may worsen the headache of mountain sickness. Keywords: high altitude pulmonary edema symptoms; high altitude pulmonary edema treatment.
I read an article that the Cov9id-19 is very similar to to high altitude pulmonary edema. Is this true and has doctor tried this treatment for Covid-19?
They are similar to some extent. For instance, for both severe COVID-19 and pulmonary edema, the lungs are wet, and there are many fluids in the ling, causing the similar clinical symptoms of difficulty breathing. But severe COVID-19 is more difficult to treat, because you just cannot get rid of the virus by any medications. The patient has to rely on his/her own immune system to get rid of the virus. By comparison, for high-altitude pulmonary edema, you just have to lower the altitude, and the pulmonary edema will go away.