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Diving > Parkinson's Disease
One cannot paint
with a broad brush and say that people with this condition should not
dive. In some cases, the body is affected very little by the disease in
it's early stages and a person should not be deprived of this pleasure.
Of course, there are those in the later stages of the condition who
certainly should not dive for several reasons. These include tremor,
muscle rigidity, ability to task adequately; medication effects are
other factors that need to be considered, as some side effects are
adverse to diving (confusion, drowsiness, hallucinations).
diving and undersea medicine for the non-medical diver, the non-diving
physician and the specialist.
There is no ill
effect of depth or
pressure on the condition itself, but there might be serious
consideration of the additive effects of increased partial pressures of
nitrogen on the medications used to treat the disease.
tremors and balance
problems reach the point where there is difficulty with donning gear,
entrances and exits from the water or personal fears about safety and
that of others others - then one should think strongly about
Parkinson's may dive if their condition is controlled so that they
can manage their gear and all of the multi-tasking that is
required even on simple dives. Diving and the effects of depth/pressure
would not have any effect on the condition.
Levodopa is the main
medication used in the treatment of PD. It may cause some people to
become dizzy, confused, or have blurred or double vision. Make sure
you know how you react to this medicine before you dive, drive, use
machines, or do anything else that could be dangerous if you are not
alert or not able to see well. Postural hypotension may occur with dizziness,
enhances L-dopa but has adverse effects when taken with nearly
antidepressant, some very serious. It can also cause orthostatic
hypotension. Benserazide or
Prolopa, has effects similar to
L-dopa. If your medications have been taken long enough to find
out how they effect you personally, and if you have none of the side
effects, then you should be able to dive, given the go-ahead by your
Mayo Clinic on PD
Health Care Schools/ Parkinson's Disease