Mount Everest new study location for U.S scientist
A study led by U.S scientists and researchers went underway on Friday as the team departed for Mount Everest, where it will study the effects of high altitude on the cardiovascular system of humans.
The climb to the Everest base camp, where they will be setting up their laboratory, will take the team about a week. They are expected to stay no shorter than to mid-May. The Mayo Clinic team in Minnesota hopes its research efforts at the world’s highest mountain will improve treatment for patients with heart and lung conditions.
Scientists said Mount Everest’s high altitudes puts stress on the body that amounts to the same conditions experienced by those suffering from heart disease, The Associated Press reported.
“We are interested in lung physiology in high altitude, which is similar to the lung physiology in heart failure patients,” Bruce Johnson, a consultant on cardiovascular diseases told Reuters in Kathmandu.
Johnson said all nine climbers will be monitored with a wrist watch and arm band. The watch will measure their blood oxygen levels while the arm band will show their energy expenditure and amount of calories being burned, Reuters reported.
Johnson further added that a pocket sized instrument built to measure cardiovascular activity will also be attached to the climbers.
The team’s study will also give new insight on altitude sickness, which often kills mountain climbers.
Hundreds attempt to climb the mountain while thousands make the journey to the base camp. The low level of oxygen leads several hikers to suffer complications. On Wednesday, a Sherpa guide who had climbed Everest at least 10 times died due to high altitude sickness, making it the first fatality in the spring season.