Oviedo, Fla. (OCP PR) – Orbital Commerce Project/Black Sky Training in conjunction with its training partner, Dr. Paul Buza, a recognized expert in both DCI and hypobaric hypoxia, announced today that they have begun a study into the effects of hypobaric hypoxia on people taking neuro-psychiatric prescriptions. This study will determine if there is any change the patient’s physiological and psychological profile during high altitude flight.
Dr. Buza stated: “I have often questioned the possibility of the exacerbation of medication side effects as a function of mild hypoxia as seen in cabin altitudes of 6,000-8,000 feet due to hypobaric hypoxia. There is anecdotal evidence to suggest this is true with the use of alcohol during flight.
“I am particularly concerned with the class of neuropsychiatric drugs including anti-depressants that have a significant side effect profile even at sea level equivalent pressures. When exposed to routine cabin altitudes one must consider the potential of side effect amplification. These medications are commonly being used today not only for depression but for other indications such as anti-smoking and chronic pain. Another concern is the possibility of the amplification of drug to drug interactions as many people are now taking multiple regimens of different medications.”
OCP spokesman David Allen went on to say that even though the FAA regards any use of these drugs as an issue for the pilots, there are no regulations or protocols in place for the rest of the flight crew.
“Not only are we concerned for the crew and passengers aboard our nations airliners, but as we begin moving towards carrying the general public into space, and because these passengers are at close proximity to the pilots, we have to know what problems these types of drugs may present at higher altitudes. We need to insure that the pilots, passengers and the general public are going to enjoy the same level of safety that they do now when flying on a commercial airline,” Allen said.
Orbital Commerce Project is the parent company of Black Sky Training and is in a strategic partnership with the Southern Aero Medical Institute and Dr. Paul Buza. Black Sky Training’s program is in process with the FAA to begin to issue type ratings for rocket powered flight.