Aims: This study describes differences in the partial pressures of exhaled nitric oxide (PeNO) between subjects fully acclimatized (ACC) to 5300 m and those who have just arrived to high altitude. Methods: PeNO was determined in eight subjects newly exposed and nonacclimatized (non-ACC) to high altitude and compared with that in nine subjects who had ACC to high altitude for 1 month. In addition, systolic pulmonary artery pressure (sPAP) and arterial oxygen saturation (SaO2) were measured in all participants. These measurements were repeated in the non-ACC group 5 and 9 days later. Results: PeNO levels on day 1 were significantly higher in the non-ACC versus ACC cohort (8.7 ± 3.5 vs. 3.9 ± 2.2 nmHg, p = 0.004). As the non-ACC group remained at altitude, PeNO levels fell and were not different when compared with those of the ACC group by day 9 (5.9 ± 2.4 vs. 3.9 ± 2.2 nmHg, p = 0.095). Higher sPAP was correlated with lower PeNO levels in all participants (R = -0.50, p = 0.043). PeNO levels were not correlated with SaO2. Conclusions: As individuals acclimatized to high altitude, PeNO levels decreased. Even after acclimatization, PeNO levels continued to play a role in pulmonary vascular tone.
- exhaled nitric oxide
- high altitude populations
- systolic pulmonary artery pressure
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health