Questions tagged [health]

Questions regarding effects on health by activities, prolonged stay, or exposure to environmental elements in space, celestial bodies, or space stations. Predominantly questions pertaining to health of human inhabitants, or astronauts. Questions pertaining to health of other, non-human organisms should include additional tags for further categorization.

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Would a broken arm/ leg be more painful in zero gravity?

Would a broken arm/leg be more painful in zero gravity? I know it would be painful no matter what, but would zero-gravity make it less painful because the bone wouldn't move as much due to lack of ...
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7 votes
1 answer
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How are the "lucky JPL peanuts" shared post-pandemic?

The extremely cool NASA JPL video Triumph at Saturn (Part I) is really worth a watch and/or listen. (Don't forget Part II as well!) A bit after 36:59 it discusses ...
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8 votes
1 answer
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Is 1/6 G enough for humans to stay healthy?

Micro-G is known to be detrimental to health in the long-term. However, the Moon is at $\frac{1}{6}$ G (while Mars is at ~$\frac{3}{8}$ G). Is $\frac{1}{6}$ G enough for humans to remain healthy in ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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Space astro/cosmo-naut rejection due to fine veins

Related to the question, Are all modern astronauts at least passable phlebotomists? Some people have clearly defined veins which allow for easy insertion of needles or cannulas, however, some people ...
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2 votes
1 answer
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First space phlebotomy? When was the first human veinous blood sample taken in space?

phlebotomists are (nearly always) highly skilled people who safely and relatively painlessly poke our veins with big needles, take blood samples, then ask us to "press here". The process is ...
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18 votes
2 answers
7k views

Are all modern astronauts at least passable phlebotomists?

phlebotomists are (nearly always) highly skilled people who safely and relatively painlessly poke our veins with big needles, take blood samples, then ask us to "press here". The process is ...
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4 votes
1 answer
199 views

Does extended microgravity increase the rate of kidney stones in astronauts? Do these lead to medical complains/discomfort while still in space?

This answer to What are the main impacts on the body of an astronaut exposed to long term zero gravity? mentions that the increase in bone loss due to extended periods of time in microgravity can not ...
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0 votes
1 answer
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What are the main impacts on the body of an astronaut exposed to long term zero gravity?

Zero gravity has considerable influence on the body of astronauts. After a long time in space it's difficult to walk when back on Earth. What would happen if future astronauts engage in spaceflights ...
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5 votes
3 answers
232 views

What animals would be best suited as pets or comfort animals for extended periods of spaceflight in microgravity?

Various scenarios that put more or less every folks in space for extended periods of time in microgravity in the future have been proposed, mostly based on space tourism but there could be ...
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17 votes
2 answers
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Martian dust getting into habitats

Martian dust could cause lung disease including cancer. Space suits and boots would become contaminated and bring the dust into the habitats. How would human missions to Mars mitigate this issue?
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16 votes
5 answers
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Besides health benefits, what are the advantages of including inertial gravity sections on spaceships?

Obviously, the benefits of building ring sections on spacecraft are pretty large when you factor in the detrimental effects prolonged stays in zero gravity environments (not accounting for radiation ...
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3 votes
3 answers
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How do modern "space windows" protect from dangerous UV? Is it simply the type of glass, or are there coatings or filters also?

Answer(s) to Did Valentin Lebedev or any another Salut cosmonaut actually get suntanned for fun and/or for science? explain that at least a few Salut cosmonauts "experimented" with getting ...
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5 votes
1 answer
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Did Valentin Lebedev or any another Salut cosmonaut actually get suntanned for fun and/or for science?

A comment below Did Salyuts have windows? links to Soviet Space Stations as Analogs, Second Edition (Doc. ID 19870012563, Contractor Report) which contains: ...the various aspects of the Soviet ...
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5 votes
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Is MOXIE's oxygen ready to breathe or is there CO2 and/or CO that would need to be scrubbed?

MOXIE splits two molecules of martian carbon dioxide into two molecules of carbon monoxide and one molecule of oxygen. Breathing elevated levels of CO2 ranges from unpleasant (to say the least and ...
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2 votes
1 answer
137 views

Is radiation on Mars line-of-sight? [duplicate]

Roughly a year ago, there was a TV show about colonizing Mars; National Geographic channel I think. The habitats were underground to avoid the Sun's radiation. So I'm wondering: does the radiation ...
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1 answer
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Did NASA ethylene scrubbers "blast out submicron particles" which attack viruses and bacteria?

In this open letter addressed to the US president, Joseph Urso, CEO of ActivePure Technologies, Dallas, Texas Why Aren’t We Talking About Destroying COVID in Indoor Air? An Open Letter on How to Open ...
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3 votes
0 answers
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Do ISS crew have the opportunity to take daily naps if they'd like to?

Could "days" on the space Station be made shorter to accomodate sleep patterns? raises an interesting point. I've often heard that for some astronauts they never really were able to sleep as ...
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1 vote
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Do ISS crews have to worry about the ionosphere? Have hazards to EVAs or surface arcing/functional anomalies happened due to ionospheric charing?

Comments below this answer tell us that the International Space Station always remained in Earth's atmosphere. It orbits in the thermosphere and simultaneously the ionosphere. This answer to How do ...
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6 votes
2 answers
376 views

Are there active proposals for the next large space station (post-ISS) to use artificial gravity?

The ISS has supported a crewed presence in space for twenty years now and while parts have been added over time, key original components are 20+ years old. Crewed presence is usually limited to a half-...
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5 votes
2 answers
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Is disabling glare common in space?

I'd like to know if astronauts have been under the effect of Disabling Glare, how easily this could accidentally happen and how long can last if this happen?
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9 votes
1 answer
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Why might an astronaut wear their wristwatch very loosely aboard the ISS?

In this video of CSA Astronaut Chris Hadfield aboard the ISS, he wears his watch very loosely--so that it continually bumps against different sides of his arm. I imagine this might be mildly ...
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0 votes
3 answers
202 views

Prior to putting spacecraft on a trajectory going a significant fraction of the speed of light, would some things need to be tested on Earth?

Except for particle accelerators, I don't think we have made any macro object go anywhere near the speeds planned for spacecraft like the one planned in Project Orion. But would there be something ...
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Did astronauts and cosmonauts headed to the Mir space station go into quarantine before launch?

Humans headed to the ISS go into quarantine for 2 weeks before launch, and if they have medical problems during that time the backup crew takes over. Was this procedure also applied when going to the ...
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5 votes
0 answers
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Thrombosis risk before launch

I am currently following the live broadcast of today's SpaceX launch. For a few hours already, astronauts are sitting inside the vessel, barely able to move. I wonder what precautions are taken to ...
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2 answers
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Did Skylab report different results on impact of zero g on humans?

We know that prolonged zero gravity is bad for human health; bone demineralisation and the like. However, Skylab was big enough for astronauts to run around the internal wall. Was the "artificial ...
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4 votes
1 answer
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How did lunar quarantine methods compare to COVID-19 quarantine recommendations?

The first three flights that landed on the moon (Apollo 11, 12, and 14) required preparations to prevent possible lunar microbes from infecting the Earth. Equipment was disinfected and the astronauts ...
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19 votes
3 answers
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Does lower gravity on Mars make it unsafe and unhealthy for humans?

I've been thinking about proposals to live on Mars. One idea is to create an artificial magnetic field to protect from solar radiation. Another idea is to warm the planet using solar mirrors. In the ...
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11 votes
3 answers
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What will happen to human body when affected by two opposing G forces?

(I am not quite sure whether I should be asking this question here or in Physics exchange or biology exchange, but i decided to place it here due to the context that this question came to my mind.) ...
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4 votes
1 answer
417 views

When during the flights did astronauts use the Valsalva device?

A spongy material is installed to the inside helmets called the Valsalva device (top right in this image) allow astronauts to do the Valsalva maneuver to relieve pressure on their eardrums when there ...
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4 votes
1 answer
200 views

How exactly is the balance of minerals handled on ISS with the use of reclaimed (demineralised) water for human consumption?

This question and answers to it contain wealth of information regarding recycling of ISS resources, and water is one of them. Water, recycled from water waste, atmosphere moisture and urine, is ...
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2 votes
1 answer
174 views

How will space suit computers likely be radiation hardened?

Writing this comment inspired the following question: Space suits are critical to life, so if there's a solar storm and the astronaut has received a less-than-lethal dose of radiation, they'll be ...
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1 vote
0 answers
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What are current epidemiologic standards for space?

In the recent Mars series by National Geographic I've seen that an astronaut dies from a brain tumor because it "was not part of screening". Now could this be real and what are health standards for ...
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6 votes
2 answers
134 views

Were there any noticeable immune system changes observed for people staying for long in space?

I have read this article about how difficult is to send ships to another possible habitable world. One aspect deals with the human bacterial companions which might be greatly affected by prolonged ...
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3 votes
0 answers
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Astronauts' sleeping heart rate on the ISS

On Earth during non-REM sleep a person's heart rate goes down. Does the same thing happen on the ISS, or does the non-REM sleeping heart rate remain close to the heart rate of the astronaut while ...
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0 votes
1 answer
215 views

Best (or least worst) conditions to "store" an astronaut in a suit for six days?

@GremlinWrangler's answer to How can an Astronaut survive for six days inside a Spacesuit? includes the following: make sure the suit can provide air and water, and adjust the temperature to ...
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5 votes
0 answers
80 views

Variable Gravity, how long in each?

Centrifugal force can be used to simulate gravity in space vehicles. Assume the "gravity" in our space vehicle can provide environments ranging from 2 gravities to none (micro), either by changing ...
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4 votes
1 answer
134 views

Space adaptation syndrome compared to BPPV (vertigo)

Has there ever been any discussion comparing the typical SAS experience and benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (when tiny calcium particles clump up in canals of the inner ear). Having recently ...
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24 votes
3 answers
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How do EVA suits manage water excretion?

This answer immediately sparked the question in my mind of how space suits manage water excretion from the person wearing them. I am aware that the astronauts had to wear diapers since one may need to ...
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7 votes
1 answer
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Do astronauts lose potassium faster than terrestrial humans?

According to the Apollo Program Summary Report, astronauts on the longer 15-17 missions have difficulties maintaining dietary potassium levels. Section 8.4 claims Negative nitrogen and potassium ...
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9 votes
1 answer
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Why would the Apollo Lunar Module pressure dump (to space?) valve have a bacterial filter?

This answer to Why did they bother closing the hatch on the LM while doing EVA? links to a transcript of Apollo 11 which contains the following (find it there by searching for "radiative"): 109:41:...
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7 votes
3 answers
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How will SpaceX's Starship accommodate its 100 passengers from the effects of micro-gravity?

According to this Wikipedia article, Starship will take on average 115 days (3.8 months) to get to Mars and 150 days maximum (4.9 months). with an average trip time to Mars of approximately 115 ...
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13 votes
2 answers
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How long were the Apollo astronauts allowed to breathe 100% oxygen at 1 atmosphere continuously?

This answer explains that from the time they suited up "in the Suit Lab before launch" until the time the capsule started depressurizing during ascent, the Apollo astronauts were breathing 100% oxygen ...
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5 votes
1 answer
421 views

Is the new RGB solid state LED lighting on the ISS ever used to produce colors other than white?

This answer to Why are these astronauts green? explains the new (now about 2 years old) solid state (LED) lighting modules being added to ISS interior lighting, replacing the fluorescent lights (see ...
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6 votes
1 answer
489 views

Has a source of vitamin C ever been successfully grown in space?

Growing one's own food has long been a goal of space exploration. It has the potential to reduce the amount of mass needed for long-term missions. Food has been experimentally grown and eaten on the ...
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14 votes
1 answer
3k views

Do space suits measure "methane" levels or other biological gases?

A comment below Was “I have the farts, again” broadcast from the Moon to the whole world? links to this humorous video clip of the 1997 comedy movie RocketMan about astronauts on Mars. Personnel on ...
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7 votes
1 answer
550 views

How soon was the Garn scale of nausea established after the senator's spaceflight?

Then-Senator Jake Garn flew on Shuttle mission STS-51-D in April 1985. He developed the worst documented case of space adaptation syndrome, for which an informal unit of space sickness was named ...
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8 votes
1 answer
580 views

How do astronauts get eye drops into their eyes?

This answer mentions that some astronauts use eye drops to relieve irritation caused by dust and lint in the air. How do they do get the drops in their eyes in microgravity? When I put drops in my ...
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6 votes
1 answer
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Aspects of "true deep space environment" on Gateway not thoroughly explored by decades of habitation of nine space stations already?

The ABC News article President Trump prompts state of confusion over space policy with tweet covers POTUS' tweet and NASA director Bridenstine's clarification tweet a few hours later, as well as cites ...
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7 votes
1 answer
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Concepts for interior color of interplanetary crewed spacecraft

I believe saw a documentary, a while back, of concepts for future, interplanetary crewed spacecraft. I thought the discussion included studying the interior colors, and the importance of gradating ...
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5 votes
1 answer
219 views

What makes Space Adaptation Syndrome worse?

Are there any particular movements or activities that exacerbate SAS, space sickness?
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