Age, Alcohol, and Simulated Altitude: Effects on Performance and Breathalyzer Scores,
FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION WASHINGTON DC OFFICE OF AVIATION MEDICINE
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Trained men in two groups, 30-39 n12 and 60-69 n13, each performed at the Multiple Task Performance Battery MTPB in four separate full-day sessions with and without alcohol 2.2 mL of 100-proof vodka per kg of body weight at ground level and at a simulated altitude of 12,500 ft 3810 m. Subjects breathed appropriate gas mixtures through oxygen masks at both ground level and altitude. Mean breathalyzer readings peaked near 88 mg and did not differ between age groups or altitude conditions. Younger subjects performed better than older subjects performance of both age groups was significantly impaired by alcohol, but these adverse effects were greater for the older subjects. No significant effects on performance were obtained due to altitude or to the interaction of altitude with alcohol. These results and those from several other studies suggest that prevalent views regarding the nature of the combined effects of alcohol and altitude on blood levels and on performance need to be redefined. Keywords Intoxication, PerformanceHuman.
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