All you travel sharks probarly knows it already:-) I just got to La Paz 4 days ago and even though i've been in high altitude for 3 weeks i still got altitude sickness. The best advice i can give drop the alcohol and eat very lightly.
It feels like the flu so if you feel you got the flu, get it checked by a doctor.
I hope none of you guys is trying the same as i have. It's terrible.
Have a nice trip.
Thanks for the advice Kim!
Hope it's not interfering with your trip too much and you start to feel better soon.
It's not unheard of for people who fly into La Paz from a low altitude destination to pass out on the tarmac before reaching the terminal building!!!
Hey Kim, did you fly in? The landing has got to be one of the ultimate approaches to any airport, not to mention landing at twice the normal speed to compensate for the altitude!!
No. I've been in the altitude for three weeks that's the wickeds part of it. I came from Cuzco, Puno, Copacabana and then La Paz. I've just spoke with a doctor from my insurance company and he claimed that it couldn't be altitude sickness, probarly more an infection. It's hard to know what's actually is a fact. Luckly i feel better after start taking the medication.
I had to go to La Paz (or other high-altitude places like Potosí) every now and then when I worked in Bolivia, and my reaction to the altitude would change every time: sometimes I felt really sick, other time nothing. In La Paz other things than just the altitude might have triggered the effect: pollution, a slight food poisoning, maybe a slight hangover? Anyway, I would bother too much.
Things I´ve felt during visits which are included with altitude sickness:
- Headache (not a migraine like pounding, more a feeling of bubbles in your head)
- No apetite for any food or drinks (dangerous, you ought to drink a lot!)
- Nose bleeding
- General feeling of shortage of breath
I hope this helps.
You're right. I lived the party life in La Paz the first couples of days and it tricked into me quickly. Yesterday i arrived to low Chile and quickly afterwards i felt ok again. Next time i'm going to the altitude i'll probarly stay away from huge amounts of cold beers and drinks:-)
My wife and I did South America earlier this year, and I probably did the right thing and got pills from my doctor to ease altitude sickness as a precaution.
I hadn't planned to take them at all (unless in dire straits) until we got stuck in Arica (coastal city in Northern Chile) and couldn't slowly bus our way to La Paz with a 2 night stop in Putre to acclimatise because the Bolivians had barricaded the border.
My wife and I had to fly Arica to La Paz, so we are talking sea level to very high level in less than 1 hour.
The lady behind me on the plane was in a wheelchair sucking oxygen before she even reached the Immigration desk at La Paz airport, and even with the pills I had taken the night before and that morning, I still felt pretty fragile.
Took it very slow for the next 2 days but kept taking the pills and had no problem hiking Isla del Sol when we got to Copacabana.
Nothing was easy at that kind of altitude, but still managed to climb Huanya Picchu at the back of Machu Picchu without too much trouble.
Coca tea and chewing coca leaf also seemed to help, or perhaps that was a placido.
P.S. My wife thought I was a wuzz taking the altitude pills and refused to take them in Arica when I did or even when we got to La Paz.
The altitude knocked her around far more that she expected!!!