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Central Technical Teams


Central Medical Commission

Central Medical Commission



The Central Medical Commission includes doctors with a range of specializations, but all with a love of and specific skills in the field of mountain medicine. The Commission has an advisory role and is also in charge of medical refresher courses. It prepares projects, heightens awareness of medical/health matters and organizes conferences, lessons and training/refresher courses on the most important medical subjects for a mountain environment.

The new Medical Handbook for the Mountains, which the Commission has been working on for quite some time and which is expected to come out in 2008, deals with all the main medical issues relevant to a mountain environment. Its aim is to provide correct and detailed information both for CAI members in need of data and specific medical advice, and for medical personnel looking for a handbook on the medical problems that could arise in this particular environment and its related activities; special insight is provided into a fairly broad range of such problems: from first aid in the event of a snake bite to reanimation in the case of acute mountain sickness, from hypothermia to mushroom poisoning, from physical training to organizing treks/expeditions, with a wealth of practical information, advice, warnings and some technical/scientific data.

The educational CD on Mountain Medicine, distributed to all the CAI’s Mountaineering and Climbing Schools and to the main local branches is a reference work and guide for all CAI teachers/instructors. It illustrates the relationship between the mountain environment and those who, with varying degrees of commitment and of physical/psychological fitness, measure themselves against it.

The CD does not set out to provide scientific, formative or research insight; in fact, the Commission would like the mountain medicine lessons provided during CAI courses to be held by qualified medical experts able to interpret, illustrate and, if necessary, elaborate the basic, concise and schematic notions given in the CD.
The slides are sub-divided according to the following subjects: first aid, what to eat, high and very high altitudes, heat and cold induced sickness, what to do if you are overwhelmed by an avalanche, vipers and ticks, eyes and UV. Each chapter provides clear and simple information/instructions about causes and possible remedies in dangerous situations.

Progetto Montagnaterapia is a project that proposes using group therapy in a mountain environment to help heal psychiatric diseases and psychological problems. It aims to improve relationships with self and with others, such as stronger self-esteem, reduced anxiety, better interpersonal relationships, patterns of behaviour with others and acceptance of one’s own body. Visit (sponsored by CAI and other organizations) for further information.

The Central Medical Commission publishes articles and in-depth studies in specialized magazines, especially in “La Rivista del Club Alpino Italiano” and “Lo Scarpone”, with news about refresher courses and events of interest.

Some of the Commission members contribute to the International Medical Commissions of CISA - IKAR and U.I.A.A.

Every 18 months, the Commission also organizes a “Refresher course for trekking and expedition doctors” . It is attended by numerous medics charged with safeguarding the health and welfare of members of tough expeditions, such as high altitude treks. In line with the Commission’s Charter, the course sets out to bring attendees up to date with the latest advances and the practical consequences of cutting-edge scientific research. The course, now approaching its thirteenth session, is rated highly in Italy’s rich scientific panorama due to the great interest of the subjects presented and to its success in terms of the number of attendees.






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