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1.  Characteristics of Headache at Altitude among Trekkers; A comparison between Acute Mountain Sickness and Non-Acute Mountain Sickness Headache 
Asian Journal of Sports Medicine  2012;3(2):126-130.
Headache at altitudes has had an incidence of 25-62% through many related studies. Many reasons are identified concerning headache at altitudes such as acute mountain sickness (AMS), sinus headache, migraine, tension type headache, and frontal tension headache. This study tried to compare different types of headache among trekkers on Mount Damavand, a 5671m mountain, Iran, to find their incidence and related symptoms and signs.
Through a cross-sectional study, we evaluated headache incidence and its correlation to AMS among people who climbed Mount Damavand. Lake Louise Score, a self-report questionnaire, was applied to make AMS diagnosis through three separate stages of trekking programs. Chi-square test was employed as the main mean of analysis.
Totally, 459 between 13-71 year olds participated in the study among which females were 148 (32.1%) and males 311 (67.8%). Headache was found in 398 (86.7%) among whom 279 (70%) were proved as AMS. Investigating the types of headache in the cases of AMS showed 64.5% to be of steady, 31% throbbing and 4.5% stabbing characters which had significant differences with a P value = 0.003. The majority of headaches were stated as frontal (38.9%) and the least prevalence belonged to the parietal area (4.4%), while global headache was reported in 27%.
This study specifies the exact location of headaches at altitude in cases of AMS and non-AMS headaches. Many cases of high altitude non-AMS headache are resulted by tension and light reflection at altitude.
PMCID: PMC3426732  PMID: 22942999
High Altitude; Headache; Mountain Sickness; Incidence; AMS
2.  The Effect of Path and Beginning Time of Ascending on Incidence of Acute Mountain Sickness around Mount Damavand in Iran (5671 m) 
Background. This study was designed to evaluate the incidence of acute mountain sickness (AMS) occurring on different climbing routes on Mount Damavand and the effect of beginning time of ascent in Iranian trekkers. Methods. This study was a descriptive cohort investigation, performed in summer 2007. All trekkers who ascended Mount Damavand from northern, western, eastern, and southern paths and passed 4200 m altitude were included in the study. Two questionnaires were completed for each trekker (personal information and Lake Louise score questionnaire). Multiple logistic regression analysis was used to explore the independent predicting variables for AMS. Results. Overall incidence rate of AMS was 53.6%. This rate was the highest in south route (61.5%) (P < 0.001). There was no difference in the incidence of AMS on other paths. AMS history, AMS history on Damavand, the beginning time of climbing, sleeping at 4200 m altitude, and home altitude had significant effect on AMS incidence, but by multiple logistic regression analysis south route and AMS history on Mount Damavand had positive effect on incidence of AMS (P = 0.019 and P < 0.001). Conclusion. The path and the beginning time of ascent can affect incidence of AMS. The risk of occurrence of AMS was 1.9 times as large for trekkers who ascended from southern route.
PMCID: PMC3316942  PMID: 22530120

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