grizz wrote:Wow! Climbing a 14er has less risk than driving down I-25 to get to the 14er. Relax, be happy, and don't worry about it. Any child at any age is always at risk, same goes for an adult. Anything can happen at anytime on a 14er or not.
I cross Hampden everyday for lunch. Maybe I should not do that anymore? I'm putting myself in great danger for a taco.
I said that I am not against taking an infant up on a 14er. I think that if you keep an eye on the child, and don't do anything stupid or ignore any signs that a problem might occur, than taking an infant to 14,000 feet is just as safe as anything. Now, I could write a long time on all the risks involved in your taco eating, but, I'll stick to the topic...
CW and Pingen, I just read a report by the Department of Pediatrics and Department of Neurology at the University of Innsbruck in conjunction with the Children's Hospital of Salzburg, that suggests that the risk of SIDs increases gradually with increasing altitude of residence.
I am looking at a consensus by the ISMM, International Society of Mountain Medicine, part of which states some information about SIDs and sudden gains in altitude. It said they had not made a direct connection yet due to "conflicting" reports. If you research SIDs, one believed cause of SIDs is malfunction of part of the brain that controls breathing. When a baby's oxygen flow is cutoff or slowed in sleep, a baby's body "adjusts", and it also wakes and crys. Sometimes, that does not happen, the baby fails to get in a better position to breath, and the baby dies. So, therefore, the ISMM voiced a concern that there is an ever so slight possibility that SIDs could occur when a developing baby's body receives lower levels of oxygen than it is used too. The baby simply fails to adjust.
Now, is going to 14,000 feet for a little bit going to make your child that much more suscetible to diseases like this? Probably not, but, the information of that possibility is out there. I found it relevant and hinted at it in my first post.
CW, HAPE and HACE obviously occur because of hypoxia. I wouldn't be afraid to say that if you look around, you'll see many reports that say infants and children have a harder time adjusting than a full grown adult, thus, I wouldn't doubt that an infants risk of developing those two, or any other hypoxia-induced problem is higher than adults. Heck, taking a new born or very young infants to higher altitudes can make their body reverse it's natural pulmonary adaptations and attempt to breath again as if it is in the womb! A grown adult is still suscetible to problems, and I would not doubt a ninth month old is out of the woods either.
Is the risk so high that you cannot take an infant on your hikes? In my opinion, probably not (that does make me right). It's all up to one's personal opinion...