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Old 11-26-2012, 05:40 PM
 
Location: Gatineau, QC, Canada
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Does anyone know if people who live, move to, or visit La Paz experience a greater incidence of health issues? It's above the 4K metre mark, and is pretty much sitting at half of plane cruising altitude.

I would think because of the very thin atmosphere, lack of oxygen, and overall compromised filter, that people may be more susceptible to the sun's energy or develop heart problems. Is there any evidence of this, or am I missing something? Just curious.
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Old 11-26-2012, 10:14 PM
 
Location: Tucson/Nogales
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Having been there a couple times, and even up higher in Potosi, when I was scouting around for a potential area to ex-pat it some day, I learned that for elderly people, it's more of a hardship/risk when you live past the 6000 foot threshold. And with La Paz, we're looking at 12,500/ 13,500 in El Alto where the Airport is.

Given the hardship the poor can face down there, I did witness, what appeared to be, elderly women, with big sacks of potatoes, scaling those near-vertical cliffs in La Paz. And I had a devil of a time climbing up 3 hilly streets to my hotel, empty-handed!

Once on a flat area, no problems, like walking around El Alto.
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Old 11-27-2012, 05:07 PM
 
Location: Victoria TX
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For people unaccustomed to it, the elevation is a serious hardship. Especially if you fly into LaPaz. rather than rising in elevation gradually.

It is not so bad if you rise gradually, I once flew into LaPaz, was miserable all night, and took a van down to Coroico, over the road of death. After two weeks in the much lower Coroico, I took the road back up to LaPaz, and it was much more manageable, but still quite affected by the altitude.

The suns rays are very hot at that altitude. On a 60 degree day (about normal in LaPaz), you will feel hot walking down the street, and notice the drop in temperature as you walk past a utility pole, just in that 2-foot wide swath of shade.
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