Efficacy and safety of inhaled budesonide on prevention of acute mountain sickness during emergent ascent: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials

Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS) is a pathophysiologic process that occurs in non-acclimated susceptible individuals rapidly ascending to high-altitude. Barometric pressure falls at high altitude and it translates to a decreased partial pressure of alveolar oxygen (PAO2) and arterial oxygen (PaO2). A gradual staged ascent with sufficient acclimatization can prevent AMS but emergent circumstances requiring exposure to rapid atmospheric pressure changes – such as for climbers, disaster or rescue team procedures, and military operations – establishes a need for effective prophylactic medications. This systematic review and meta-analysis aim to analyze the incidence of AMS during emergent ascent of non-acclimatized individuals receiving inhaled budesonide compared to placebo.