Delayed Drowsiness After Normobaric Hypoxia Training in an F/A-18 Hornet Simulator

Nikke Varis, Antti Leinonen, Jesper Perälä, Tuomo K. Leino, Lauri Husa, Roope Sovelius

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    BACKGROUND: In military aviation, due to high-altitude flight operations, hypoxia training is mandatory and nowadays is mainly done as normobaric hypoxia training in flight simulators. During the last decade, scientific data has been published about delayed recovery after normobaric hypoxia, known as a “hypoxia hangover.” Sopite syndrome is a symptom complex that develops as a result of exposure to real or apparent motion, and it is characterized by yawning, excessive drowsiness, lassitude, lethargy, mild depression, and a reduced ability to focus on an assigned task. CASE REPORT: In this study, we present the case of a 49-yr-old pilot who participated in normobaric hypoxia refreshment training in an F/A-18C Hornet simulator and experienced delayed drowsiness, even 3 h after the training. DISCUSSION: This case report demonstrates the danger of deep hypoxia. Hypoxia training instructions should include restrictions related to driving a car immediately after hypoxia training. In addition, hypoxia may lower the brain threshold for sopite syndrome.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)715-718
    Number of pages4
    JournalAerospace Medicine and Human Performance
    Issue number9
    Publication statusPublished - 2023
    Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


    • hypoxia training
    • normobaric
    • simulator sickness
    • sopite syndrome

    Publication forum classification

    • Publication forum level 1

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Medicine (miscellaneous)
    • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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