What is Hypoxia?

  • Hypoxia (also known as Hypoxiation or Anoxemia) is a condition in which the body or a region of the body is deprived of adequate oxygen supply. Hypoxia may be classified as either generalized, affecting the whole body, or local, affecting a region of the body.
  • Generalized hypoxia occurs in healthy people when they ascend to high altitude, where it causes altitude sickness leading to potentially fatal complications: high altitude pulmonary edema (HAPE) and high altitude cerebral edema (HACE).
  • Hypoxia also occurs in healthy individuals when breathing mixtures of gasses with low oxygen content, e.g. while diving underwater especially when using closed-circuit rebreather systems that control the amount of oxygen in the supplied air.
  • Hypoxia, if not attended to will lead to the death of the tissue which is devoid of oxygen.