Going to Altitude With Anxious-depressive Symptoms (Psychoxie)

U

Universitaet Innsbruck

Status

Enrolling

Conditions

Mental Disorder
Hypoxia

Treatments

Biological: Hypoxia

Study type

Interventional

Funder types

Other

Identifiers

NCT05323864
2022

Details and patient eligibility

About

Introduction: Currently, there is a lack of international guidelines or clinical recommendations for individuals with mental illnesses (i.e., bipolar disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder) going on high altitude sojourns. However, these guidelines would be important considering that mental illnesses are among the most common disorders worldwide and millions of people are hiking at high altitudes in the Alps, being granted easy access up to 3800m by cable cars. Before conceptualizing these guidelines, it seems necessary to study the physiological and psychological effects of ambient pressure changes leading to oxygen deficiency (hypoxia) in individuals with mental illnesses when being exposed to hypoxic conditions. The investigators hypothesize a shift towards negative affective responses and state anxiety as well as increased levels of neurotransmitter precursor amino acids (PHE/TYR and KYN/TRP) in individuals with mental illnesses when being exposed to hypoxic conditions. Methods and Analysis: The investigators plan to perform a double-blind randomized controlled trial in a safe laboratory environment by using a normobaric hypoxic chamber. Participants suffering from depression and anxiety symptoms will be included as well as age and sex-matched healthy controls. They will attend a six-hour exposure equivalent to 3800m of altitude as well as a six-hour exposure to sham hypoxic conditions. Recruited participants will be screened by the Beck Anxiety and Depression Inventory, the Symptom Checklist (SCL-90) as well as an interview assessment. Affective responses in state anxiety will be assessed before, and during each hour of exposure by using the Feeling Scale (FS), Felt Arousal Scale (FAS), Positive and Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS), State-Anxiety Inventory (STAI) and subjective mental stress levels (Visual Analogue Scale; VAS). Physiological parameters will be assessed by venous blood sampling, pulse oximetry and oxidative stress level measurement before entering the chamber, after three and six hours of exposure. Additionally, symptoms of acute mountain sickness will be assessed by the Lake Louise Score before, after three and six hours of exposure. Follow-up measurements are planned one and seven days after the chamber visit, consisting of venous blood sampling, the Beck Anxiety and Depression Inventory. A series of univariate analyses of covariance (ANCOVA) for repeated measures will be used to test the three-way (i.e. "group × condition × time") and two-way ("group × condition" and "group × time") interactions. Analyses will be adjusted for possible confounding, by adding age, sex, smoking, prior AMS, and medication status in the models as covariates. Ethics and dissemination: Ethical approval has been obtained from the ethics committee of the Medical University of Innsbruck (1250/2021).

Enrollment

68 estimated patients

Sex

All

Ages

18 to 65 years old

Volunteers

Accepts Healthy Volunteers

Inclusion criteria

  • sufficient command of the German language
  • no psychotic or cognitive disorders
  • patients suffering from anxious-depressive symptoms (meeting the cut off points of light-medium in the screening for anxiety and depression symptoms)

Exclusion criteria

  • pregnant or breastfeeding
  • permanent residence above 1000m
  • overnight stays at altitudes above 2500m in the previous month
  • exposure to 2500m or higher two weeks prior to the six-hour hypoxic exposure

Trial design

Primary purpose

Basic Science

Allocation

Randomized

Interventional model

Crossover Assignment

Masking

Double Blind

68 participants in 2 patient groups

Normobaric hypoxia
Experimental group
Description:
Normobaric hypoxia equivalent to 3800m terrestrial altitude. The chamber located on the campus of the University of Innsbruck's Department of Sport Science. The chamber dimension is 5 x 3m.
Treatment:
Biological: Hypoxia
Sham hypoxia
Sham Comparator group
Description:
The chamber located on the campus of the University of Innsbruck's Department of Sport Science. The chamber dimension is 5 x 3m.
Treatment:
Biological: Hypoxia

Trial contacts and locations

1

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Data sourced from clinicaltrials.gov

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