Diamox/Acetazolamide "Source"

Psamathe
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Diamox/Acetazolamide "Source"

Postby Psamathe » 19 Sep 2018, 6:33pm

Not a cycling question but does anybody know of a reliable source to get Diamox/Acetazolamide in the UK. There are quite a few online pharmacies (that do some token GP consultation) but they all sound a bit dodgy to me (I'm not convinced by them). I'm sure my own GP wont issue me a prescription (quite right that he shouldn't given primary healthcare pressures).

I was wondering about trying one of these telephone GP services (£25 for a phone consultation e.g.Babylon Health) to get a private prescription. With a private prescription my local pharmacy will order them in for a minimal cost (private charges).

I was wondering if anybody here has got hold of any in the past. Not sure I'll need them but planning and I'd be keen to take them with me "just in case".

Thanks
Ian

freeflow
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Re: Diamox/Acetazolamide "Source"

Postby freeflow » 19 Sep 2018, 11:45pm

You can request a private prescription from your own GP. Whether they are willing is another matter.

botty
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Re: Diamox/Acetazolamide "Source"

Postby botty » 21 Sep 2018, 6:45am

You don't say why you want them so it is difficult for any medical members on here to offer advice on whether your GP would/should consider giving you a prescription (it is a prescription only medication). I have had friends prescribed them for high altitude trips in the past.

If unwilling to see your own GP why not look up travel clinics catering to adventure travellers but you might have to travel to London.

Buy the physical medications on line from an 'unusual' source and you could end up with anything rather than what you are expecting.

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NUKe
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Re: Diamox/Acetazolamide "Source"

Postby NUKe » 21 Sep 2018, 8:03am

Would have said what botty has said, at least let your GP have a go first. Online medicines can range from placebos to poison, and it’s a bit of a lottery which you get.
NUKe
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Psamathe
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Re: Diamox/Acetazolamide "Source"

Postby Psamathe » 21 Sep 2018, 9:29am

botty wrote:You don't say why you want them so it is difficult for any medical members on here to offer advice on whether your GP would/should consider giving you a prescription (it is a prescription only medication). I have had friends prescribed them for high altitude trips in the past.

If unwilling to see your own GP why not look up travel clinics catering to adventure travellers but you might have to travel to London.

Buy the physical medications on line from an 'unusual' source and you could end up with anything rather than what you are expecting.

For Altitude. I've no idea if I may or may not suffer (and from research nobody can ever know) but looking like my travel will be sea level (+/- a bit flying to 3400m). Looking at options for a slower ascent but it would at best be a couple of days.

I'm checking with my GP but with primary healthcare already beyond stretched I feel it would be wrong of me to take an NHS GP appointment (the pills are cheap anyway - I checked with my local pharmacy).

I've tried local Travel Clinics but none can provide it (nearest I found that can is 200 miles away and they require you attend an appointment). I've e-mailed Babylon Health (the £25 private telephone GP consultation thing) to see if it's something they can prescribe and their answer was vague and did not say either way. Private GP appointments I've found are £75!

Ian

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foxyrider
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Re: Diamox/Acetazolamide "Source"

Postby foxyrider » 21 Sep 2018, 10:32am

3400 is not very high. There are places in the Alps for example where you can get that high by cablecar, the train up the Jungfrau will exceed that in less than an hours ride.

I have no problem with being prepared but I think you are worrying about not a lot here. 5000m - yes i'd start to be thinking about it but not 3500m.
Convention? what's that then?

Airnimal Chameleon touring, Orbit Pro hack, Orbit Photon audax, Focus Mares AX tour, Peugeot Carbon sportive, Owen Blower vintage race - all running Tulio's finest!

Psamathe
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Re: Diamox/Acetazolamide "Source"

Postby Psamathe » 21 Sep 2018, 10:50am

foxyrider wrote:3400 is not very high. There are places in the Alps for example where you can get that high by cablecar, the train up the Jungfrau will exceed that in less than an hours ride.

I have no problem with being prepared but I think you are worrying about not a lot here. 5000m - yes i'd start to be thinking about it but not 3500m.

I've not published my full intended itinerary as the question was about where to get NOT justifying my wanting. NHS advice is above 3000m. And if you want to know my itinerary then shortly after arriving at 3400m I'm heading up to 5200m - happy now or do you require latitudes and longitudes to justify my seeking taking it with me "just in case" (particularly in recent years there have been a few deaths from AMS lower the 3400m).

"AMS occurs in about 20% of people after rapidly going to 2,500 metres (8,000 ft) and 40% of people going to 3,000 metres (10,000 ft)."

(p.s. How many people stay at the top of the Jungfrau? Relevant because AMS is said to start between 6 and 24 hours after reaching altitude. And from what altitude do they start their ascent? and people do suffer AMS on the Jungfrau)

Ian

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foxyrider
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Re: Diamox/Acetazolamide "Source"

Postby foxyrider » 21 Sep 2018, 1:29pm

No need to get uppity or defensive, you said you were going to 3000m ish not 5000m+, not bothered where you are going, i'm sure you'd tell us if you wanted to share.

Good luck
Convention? what's that then?

Airnimal Chameleon touring, Orbit Pro hack, Orbit Photon audax, Focus Mares AX tour, Peugeot Carbon sportive, Owen Blower vintage race - all running Tulio's finest!

brynpoeth
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Re: Diamox/Acetazolamide "Source"

Postby brynpoeth » 21 Sep 2018, 7:29pm

This has been discussed before on these fora, try searching, I remember asking whether people from the Andes had trouble at low levels

Many people would not suffer at 3400m but one does not know, could affect otherwise healthy people
Cycling? Of course, but it is far better on a Gillott.. Alternative facts welcome

botty
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Re: Diamox/Acetazolamide "Source"

Postby botty » 21 Sep 2018, 8:27pm

No reputable medical provider will provide you with a prescription without review. That means:
1) see you GP
2) pay the fee for your phone consultation
3) take the time to go to the travel clinic

Just because the medication is 'cheap' does not mean it is safe for you to use without assessment (unless you have medical degree?). How confident are you that you don't have incipient glaucoma, hyponatraemia, hypokalaemia or borderline liver impairment?

Psamathe
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Re: Diamox/Acetazolamide "Source"

Postby Psamathe » 21 Sep 2018, 10:12pm

foxyrider wrote:No need to get uppity or defensive, you said you were going to 3000m ish not 5000m+, not bothered where you are going, i'm sure you'd tell us if you wanted to share.

Good luck

"AMS occurs in about 20% of people after rapidly going to 2,500 metres (8,000 ft) and 40% of people going to 3,000 metres (10,000 ft)."

3400m (what I said, but even 3000m) is enough to cause problems for some and seems that nobody can really know if they might suffer (even previous altitude experience is not always a good indication).

Ian
Last edited by Psamathe on 21 Sep 2018, 10:37pm, edited 2 times in total.

Psamathe
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Re: Diamox/Acetazolamide "Source"

Postby Psamathe » 21 Sep 2018, 10:23pm

botty wrote:No reputable medical provider will provide you with a prescription without review. That means:
1) see you GP
2) pay the fee for your phone consultation
3) take the time to go to the travel clinic

Just because the medication is 'cheap' does not mean it is safe for you to use without assessment (unless you have medical degree?). How confident are you that you don't have incipient glaucoma, hyponatraemia, hypokalaemia or borderline liver impairment?

1. GP wont do it (quite rightly given the pressures primary healthcare us under)
2. Happy to do this (it's not the cost it's whether they can actually prescribe it and you have to pay even if the consultation is 20 secs ("we don't do that")
3. 200 miles each way is too much (I'd get some there - much easier as it's pretty well over the counter there

Ironically, glaucoma - clear as I'm tested every year due to family history; rest pretty confident as I had no end of tests a few months ago trying to trace down something in Liver area (as well as other now annual tests for other reasons)! But I agree they are valid concerns to raise as only my GP and myself know the tests and results and I suspect your list is not every potential contraindication. I'd definitely want to through a reputable route as some UK based online providers seem to suggest a dose double that the NHS suggest.

When I mentioned the low cost of the pills, that was from my local pharmacy from a private prescription (I checked as no point in getting a private prescription if the pharmacy then wanted £100 per dose!).

Ian

Psamathe
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Re: Diamox/Acetazolamide "Source"

Postby Psamathe » 13 Oct 2018, 8:07pm

Got some in the end (or rather they are on order). But weird how the NHS recommend them, travel clinics recommend them but very difficult to get hold of. I checked with my GP (telephoned the surgery, didn’t take an appointment) and they quite rightly said no (they have a 3 week waiting list of ill people). Most travel clinics have nobody who can prescribe then; I found only 2, both over 100 miles away. So ended-up using the internet but through a way that should be safe.

Ian

andrew_s
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Re: Diamox/Acetazolamide "Source"

Postby andrew_s » 14 Oct 2018, 10:54am

A Lhasa to Kathmandu ride?

Psamathe
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Re: Diamox/Acetazolamide "Source"

Postby Psamathe » 14 Oct 2018, 11:05am

andrew_s wrote:A Lhasa to Kathmandu ride?

Not cycling. But I'm too obstinate to ascend slowly - I don't want to hang around in places that don't particularly interest me so probably ascending too quickly which I understand will increase my chances of suffering

Ian