scubadoc Ten Foot Stop

May 29, 2007


Filed under: Interesting Newsscubadoc @ 7:54 am
This month’s additions, re-appearances, and bunches of updated/re-directs this month to my list of about 8000 links at
( the dive only links section of this list is at: )
I added an article on my web site for using recreational underwater lasers to adapt a couple of common angle measuring tools to relatively inexpensive underwater survey devices:
This article also includes some of the trigonometry used to locate objects on a map grid.

May 27, 2007

Up-coming Meetings of Interest

Filed under: Interesting Newsscubadoc @ 10:55 am

SPUMS 37th Annual Scientific Meeting 2008

Dates: 25-31 May 2008

Venue: Liamo Resort and Walindi Plantation, Kimbe, West New Britain, PAPUA NEW GUINEA

Themes: The Treatment Tables, Tropical Medicine Update, Resuscitation Update

Guest Speakers: Professor Alf Brubak, Dr Richard Moon, Dr David Williams

Convenor: Dr Chris Acott.

If you wish to present a paper please contact the convenor. Abstracts for presentation should be submitted before 30 April 2008 as a Word File of up to 250 words (excluding references- 4 only) and with only one figure. Intending speakers are reminded that it is SPUMS policy that their presentation is published in Diving and Hyperbaric Medicine. The Editor will contact speakers prior to the meeting.

Conference Information:

Conference Registration:

For additional information: Dr Chris Acott


Tel: +61 8 84312295

Fax: +61 8 84318219

Mobile: +61 (0)412618417


European Underwater & Baromedical Society 33nd Annual Scientific Meeting 2007

Dates: 08-15 September 2007

Venue: Sharm el-Sheikh, Sinai, Egypt

Sunny, warm Sharm el-Sheikh invites you to participate in the 2007 EUBS conference. Sharm el-Sheikh is the UNESCO designated city of peace and one of the fastest growing tourism communities on the face of the earth. Early registration is advised.

For additional information contact: or contact Dr Adel Taher, Secretary General of the 33rd EUBS Annual Scientific Meeting


Mobile: +20 12 212 4292 (24 hours)


British Hyperbaric Association Annual Meeting 2007

Dates: 01-04 November 2007 (pre-meeting diving programme 20 October to 01 November)

Venue: Oban, Scotland

For information contact: BHA 2007, Dunstaffnage Hyperbaric Unit, Scottish Association for Marine Science, Oban, Argyll, Scotland PA37 1QA




Hyperbaric Technicians and Nurses Association 15th Annual Scientific Meeting

Dates: 09-11 August 2007

Venue: Stamford Plaza, Adelaide

Guest Speakers: Associate Professor Mike Davis, Professor Des Gorman, Mr Dick Clarke

For further information please contact: Czes Mucha


Phone: +61-(0)8-8222-5121

Fax: +61-(0)-8-8232-4207

May 24, 2007

Transcutaneous Oximetry: Art, Science and Practice

Filed under: Interesting Newsscubadoc @ 7:46 am

Although almost all of them thought TCOM was useful, 80% indicated that TCOM was underutilized at their facility. An overwhelming majority responded that they would do more TCOMs if they “understood TCOM better.”


If you are like your peers, you probably feel the same way.


Would you like to understand transcutaneous oximetry better?


Would you like to have confidence performing TCOM tests?


Would you like to have confidence interpreting TCOM tests?


Join us and a distinguished faculty for the UHMS pre-meeting on transcutaneous oximetry, June 13, 2007 for:


Transcutaneous Oximetry: Art, Science and Practice

UHMS Annual Scientific Meeting Information/Registration:

If you are already registered for the ASM and would like to add this course, you can log back into your registration and add it or contact me and I will add for you.

May 23, 2007


Filed under: Interesting Newsscubadoc @ 9:04 am

Dr. Omar Sanchez, our Argentinian correspondent, writes to remind us of a review about malaria in the JAMA at . The articles ar not all available in full but all have a short review that you might find valuable. Prophylaxis and treatment of malaria is an important consideration for all divers travelling into mosquito infested areas.

About malaria cycle there is an interesting animation available here:
And timeline:

See also our web page at

May 16, 2007


Filed under: Interesting Newsscubadoc @ 8:59 am

12th September 2007
Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt
Please see the International High Pressure Biology Group website
Organized by the International Group on High Pressure Biology
S. Daniels (UK) Co-President; Y. Grossman (Israel) Co-President
This will be held as a joint meeting with the 33rd Annual
Scientific Meeting of the European Underwater and
Baromedical Society on Diving and Hyperbaric Medicine
September 8th-15th, 2007, Sharm el-Sheikh, Sinai, Egypt
Effects of Pressure at Cellular and Molecular Levels
Mechanisms of Inert Gas Narcosis
Effects of Pressure and Inert Gases on Physiological
System and Whole Organisms
Basic Mechanisms of Hyperbaric Oxygen and Hyperoxia
Title and abstract must be sent before June 30, 2007
email to Refer to “HPB ABSTRACT” on subject line
For Hotel accommodation, you have to go to the EUBS 2007 Meeting
The price to attend the Xth High Pressure Biology Meeting at Sharm el-
Sheik in September 2007 as been fixed as:
€50 for participant at International High Pressure Biology meeting only
€20 for participant also registered for the EUBS meeting
free for students also registered for the EUBS meeting
Please Note: Those interested in registering for the High Pressure Biology
meeting only should register by email to and not
online via the EUBS symposium website.

Please see the International High Pressure Biology Group website


May 13, 2007


Filed under: Interesting Newsscubadoc @ 10:02 am
1.  Our 40th Anniversary Meeting in Maui.
2.  Medical Assessment for Fitness to Dive Course.
3.  UHMS Office Moves to Durham, NC in July.
4.  Our Library Use.

5.  Dr. Jordi Desola Receives Special Accreditation.

1.  Our 40th Anniversary Meeting in Maui.  You have already heard we are sold out at the Ritz-Carlton resort on Maui for our 40th anniversary meeting.  In fact, we have exceeded our contracted room nights by about 300 room night.  This is outstanding to say the least.  We have registrations for over 280 persons.  Our planning committee chairman, Dr. Brett Hart, is putting the final touches on the program and, believe me, it is an outstanding program.
Our Past President, Dr. Caroline Fife is working hard to put her final touches on our pre-course “Transcutaneous Oximetry, Art, Science and Practice” that will be held on Wednesday, June 13 from 0800 to 1700.  Tentative session titles and speakers are being finalized as I write this, but just look at the interesting topics being considered:
o  Evaluating wound healing potential.
o  Predicting healing after amputation.
o  Evaluating arterial status.
o  Evaluating response to revascularization.
o  Evaluating benefit from HBOT.
o  Interpreting TCOM studies.
How about that?  Makes you want to sign on for the course, doesn’t it.  If you haven’t already done so, you may register for the course by emailing Lisa at or telephone her at (410)257-6606 x104 OR at the registration desk as you check into our meeting…so long as you arrive prior to Wednesday morning. 
Our diving expedition now has four vacancies,  two are the $1995 slots for males only and the other two are the $2195 slots.  Two of the vacancies occurred because of Ron Bangasser untimely death last week.  Such is beyond our control and we simply have to go on with life, sad as the events may be.  Consequently, we will go on with the dive expedition, but we would really like to fill these four vacant slots (that once were filled).  If you are interested, please telephone Dr. Richard Smerz at (808)587-3425 or email at
Our ATLS post-course had to be cancelled due to events beyond our control, so we are preparing to conduct it at our annual meeting in Salt Lake City.  Fortunately, Attorney Bobby Delise is available to repeat the course he did for us in Orlando last year, so “Medical Legal Aspects of Fitness to Dive and the Practice of Hyperbaric Medicine” will be held on Sunday, June 17, beginning at 0800 with coffee and introductions.  The course in Orlando was rated by one attendee as the best course he had ever attended, bar none.  Bobby told me he has added some new information this year so stand by for some good stuff. If you are attending our 40th anniversary meeting and would like to go to this course, you can email Lisa at or telephone her at (410)257-6606 x104 OR register at the registration desk as you check into our meeting.

2.  Medical Assessment for Fitness to Dive Course.  We just recently returned from our first course in Europe.  We were in Florence, Italy for the course and, as always, it was an excellent course with great in-class cross-talk by the attendees.  While there we were privileged to visit the HBO facility in Careggi Hospital where Dr.’s Ruocco and Bonetti are the attending physicians.  The patient load at this outstanding hyperbaric facility is averaging 30 patients per day for five days each week.  One of the attendees of our course in Florence said, “After 30 years being in this field, I am enlightened.”  He also rated the medical-legal session at a “7″ (top score on the form is “5″) and commented that the legal session alone was worth the trip to Florence.  While in Florence, we received invitations to both Germany and Athens, Greece for future courses in Europe.   The one who invited us to Germany said that, should we come there with our course, we could count on several commercial sponsors, as well as a classroom full of attendees.  The person who invited us to Athens likewise said that he could all but guarantee a classroom of attendees.  Well, that’s future and we will be talking about our next course in Europe, particularly since DMAC, EDTC, ECHM, and ECB have all endorsed our course for Level 1 Approved Medical Examiner of Divers.  In the more immediate future, our next course will be held in Mobile, Alabama on October 4-7, 2007.  To apply for the course go to our website at and scroll down until you find the course…click on a form to print and fax or register on-line.  We have not increased the cost of this course since we organized it over three years ago, so our October 2007 course may be the last time you will be able to attend at the current cost of $680 (once said to be the cheapest 33 CME’s in existence).

3.  UHMS Office Moves to Durham, NC in July.  We notified you that Dr. Peter Bennett is the Board of Directors selection as our incoming Executive Director.  I will be turning over the reins to him in July, but will continue in an advisory capacity and in what some would call a special assistant to our President until my approved retirement date of 31 December 2007.  Being that Dr. Bennett is established in Durham, North Carolina and has no interest in relocating to Maryland, our office will be moving to Durham in July after we return from our annual meeting.  Lisa will be relocating with the office.  We will be informing you of the hew UHMS address and telephone numbers at the appropriate time.  Our email addresses will remain the same as at present.

4.  Our Library Use.  Our use of the library service the UHMS provides our membership increased during the 2006-2007 year by 296% over the previous year.  This is wonderful, but we would like to see even more usage.  All the holdings we had in Kensington have been donated to the Duke University Medical Center Library and Dr. Pat Thibodeau and her staff put a system in place where our members can access not only our former holdings, but all of the holdings of the Medical Center Library as well.  Many have said this service alone is worth the cost of membership in our society.  I agree! 
5.  Dr. Jordi Desola Receives Special Accreditation.  We have just received the good news that our long-time member and a great voice for the UHMS has been accredited as Professor of Medicine by the Catalan Qualifying Agency for the University System in Spain.  Dr. Desola has been teaching Diving and Hyperbaric Medicine for more than 25 years in Spanish-speaking countries…this recognition is certainly much deserved.  Congratulations Dr. Desola!

May 11, 2007

New Book, Scuba Diving Safety, Published

Filed under: Interesting Newsscubadoc @ 9:05 am

Dan Orr, the president of DAN, and I have written a new book, called Scuba Diving Safety. Attached is a press release from the publisher Human Kinetics. This book is a reference book every serious diver should have on the shelf.

For more information, or to look inside the book and see some sample pages, visit our website

You can also find more information about Eric’s other books at

Eric Douglas
Author of Cayman Cowboys, Flooding Hollywood and Scuba Diving Safety


May 8, 2007

Loss of Thumb in Moray Feeding Video

Filed under: Interesting Newsscubadoc @ 12:20 pm
From Buenos Aires, Omar Sanchez MD, Wetdoc.

May 4, 2007

Metric Hyperbaric Tables

Filed under: Interesting Newsscubadoc @ 11:03 am

Here are the British Hyperbaric Association tables for recompression that has the British Royal Navy tables in meters. These are comparable to the USN tables. .

Also, here is a web site that gives extensive background and rationale in the use of HBO in the treatment of diabetic [and other non-healing] wounds, as well as it’s use in approved conditions other than decompression illness. .


Pressure-equalizing earplugs do not prevent barotrauma on descent from 8000 ft cabin altitude.

Filed under: Interesting Newsscubadoc @ 11:00 am

We get repeated queries about the use of vented ear plugs for the relief and prevention of middle ear barotrauma.(Doc’s Proplugs, Earplanes, JetEar). Although there is no conceivable reason why they should work across an intact tympanic membrane - there are many who swear by it’s benefits. I have often thought that this is more of a placebo effect than anything else and have not promoted or recommended them as beneficial. Now, I have some experimental work and observations to back up my position. In the Aviation, Space and Environmental Medicine Journal, there is report of a good study showing no benefit from the use of JetEar plugs in preventing middle ear barotrauma. As a matter of fact, the ears using the plugs were worse. The abstract of the article is shown below. Whether od not this ear plug translates to the Doc’s Proplugs is not known for sure but is highly likely.

Pressure-equalizing earplugs do not prevent barotrauma on descent from 8000 ft cabin altitude.
Klokker M, Vesterhauge S, Jansen EC.
Aviat Space Environ Med. 2005 Nov;76(11):1079-82.

Aviation Medical Center & Dept. of Otorhinolaryngology, Head & Neck Surgery, Rigshospitalet, Copenhagen University Hospital, Blegdamsvej 9, DK-2100 Copenhagen, Denmark.

INTRODUCTION: The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of pressure-equalizing earplugs available in major airports and drugstores. No previous study has focused on preventing barotrauma using these earplugs. METHODS: Blinded and double-blinded, one type of pressure-equalizing earplugs (JetEars) was studied in 27 volunteers disposed to ear barotrauma. They acted as their own controls with an active earplug in one ear and a placebo earplug in the other ear at random. All were exposed to the same well-defined pressure profile for 1 h at 8000 ft, comparable to the environment in civil commercial air travel in a pressurized cabin. Satisfaction was assessed by questionnaire and objective results were evaluated prior to and after the pressure exposure by tympanometry and otoscopy using the Teed classification. RESULTS: The majority of the volunteers (78%) reported a pleasant noise-reducing feeling using the earplugs. However, 75% also experienced ear pain during descent. In comparing the middle ear pressure before and after pressurization, a decrease was found in ears with both active earplugs and placebo earplugs. No difference between the active and the placebo earplugs were found. Furthermore, after evaluation of the two groups of ears using otoscopy, no prevention of barotrauma was found. In fact, the ears using an active pressure-equalizing earplug scored significantly worse (p = 0.033). CONCLUSIONS: Feelings of noise reduction were reported, but no prevention of barotrauma could be demonstrated with the use of pressure-equalizing earplugs. Pressure-equalizing earplugs cannot be recommended in air travel for preventing ear barotrauma.

See also on our web site:

ENT Problems in SCUBA Diving


Side Effects and Risks of HBOT

Filed under: Interesting Newsscubadoc @ 10:40 am

The Hyperbaric Healing Institute has Risks of HBOT on it’s web page

Hyperbaric Healing Institute

Side Effects
As with any treatment, side effects are possible. However, with hyperbaric oxygen therapy they are minimal. The most common is barotrauma to the ears and sinuses caused by pressure changes.

Patients are taught autoinflationary techniques to promote adequate clearing of the ears during treatment. Decongestants may be helpful. This problem is temporary and resolves when HBO treatment is completed.

If the patient has ear pain or is unable to clear his or her ears, the insertion of myringotomy tubes may be necessary before the treatment continues.

Taken from a 10-year study of 1,505 patients who received 52,758 2-hour HBO treatments at 2.4 ata once or twice daily (The maximum treatment protocol used for problem wounds around the world).

Inability to equalize middle ear pressure 0.37%
Paranasal sinus blocks 0.09%
Confinement anxiety 0.05%
Oxygen convulsions 0.009% (all ceased after removing hood/masks)
Pulmonary oxygen toxicity 0.00%
Permanent ocular refractive changes 0.00%

Other side effects are more rare.

Oxygen toxicity can cause CNS and pulmonary effects. Seizures occur rarely during treatment and are self limiting.
Seizures will cease when the patient is removed from breathing the pure oxygen.
Factors such as history of seizures, high temperature, acidosis and low blood sugar are taken into account before treatment is begun.
Pulmonary oxygen toxicity may occur in patients who require supplemental oxygen between treatments. This is very rarely seen with the limited number of treatments currently used.
Some patients may suffer claustrophobia. This is managed by maintaining communication, use of relaxation techniques and mild sedation, if necessary. Incidents of claustrophobia, however, are decreased by HHI’s large diameter multiplace chamber.
Rarely, patients develop temporary changes in eyesight; these are minor and occur only in those individuals who have large numbers of treatments. Vision usually returns to normal within eight weeks following the end of treatments.
Patients with cataracts may experience accelerated maturation of the cataract, but the treatments do not cause cataract formation.

Anyone with any of the following conditions may not be a suitable candidate for HBOT:

1. Asthma - Small airway hyper-reactivity may result in air trapping and pulmonary barotrauma on ascent. A decision to treat such patients should not be undertaken lightly, particularly in light of evidence that the administration of some bronchodilators may increase the incidence of cerebral arterial gas embolism through pulmonary vasodilation.

2. Congenital spherocytosis - Such patients have fragile red cells and treatment may result in massive haemolysis

3. Cisplatinum - There is some evidence that this drug retards wound healing when combined with HBO.

4. Disulphiram (Antabuse) - There is evidence to suggest that this drug blocks the production of suproxide dismutase and this may severely effect the body’s defenses against oxygen free radicals. Experimental evidence suggest that a single exposure to HBO is safe but that subsequent treatments may be unwise.

5. Doxorubicin - (Adriamycin). This chemotherapeutic agent becomes increasingly toxic under pressure and animal studies suggest at least a one week break between last dose and first treatment in the chamber.

6. Emphysema with CO2 retention - Caution should be exercised in giving high pressures + concentrations of oxygen to patients who may be existing on the hypoxic drive to ventilation. Such patients may become apnoeic in the chamber and require IPPV. In addition, gas trapping and subsequent lung rupture are associated with bullous disease.

7. High Fevers - High fevers (>38.5degC) tend to lower the seizure threshold due to O2 toxicity and may result in delaying of relatively routine therapy. If patients are to be treated then attempt should be made to lower their core temperature with antipyretics and physical measures

8. History of middle ear surgery or disorders - These patients may be unable to clear their ears, or risk further injury with vigorous attempts to do so. An ENT consult for possible placement of grommets is usually wise

9. History of seizures - HBO therapy may lower the seizure threshold and some workers advocate increasing the baseline medication for such patients

10. Optic Neuritis - There have been reports in patients with a history of optic neuritis of failing sight and even blindness after HBO therapy. This complaint would seem to be extremely rare but of tragic consequence.

11. Pneumothorax - A pocket of trapped gas in the pleura will decrease in volume on compression and re-expand on surfacing during a cycle of HBO therapy. During oxygen breathing at depth nitrogen will be absorbed from the space and replaced with oxygen. These fluxes of gases and absolute changes in volume may result in further lung damage and or arterial gas embolization. If there is a communication between lung and pneumothorax with a tension component, then a potentially dangerous situation exists as the patient is brought to the surface. As Boyle’s Law predicts, a 1.8 litre pneumothorax at 20 msw is potentially a 6 litre pneumothorax at sea level - certainly a life threatening situation. For this reason it is mandatory to place a chest tube to relieve a pneumothorax before contemplating HBO therapy. Particular care must be taken with patients who give a history of chest trauma or thoracic surgery.

12. Pregnancy - The fears that either retrolental fibroplasia or closure of the ductuc arteriosus may result in the fetus whose mother undergoes HBO appear to be groundless from considerable Russian experience. However, HHI continues to exercise caution in limiting treatment of pregnant women to emergency situations.

13. Upper Respiratory Tract Infections - These are relative contra-indications due to the difficulty such patients may have in clearing their ears and sinuses. Elective treatment may be best postponed for a few days in such cases.

14. Viral Infections - Many workers in the past have expressed concern that viral infections may be considerably worsened after HBO. There have been no studies to give convincing evidence of this and no reported activation of herpetic lesions associated with HBO.

References to Risks of HBOT on scubadoc Diving Medicine Online


Guidelines for Recreational Diving with Diabetes - Summary Form

Filed under: Interesting Newsscubadoc @ 10:34 am

We have placed the following summary of guidelines for recreational diving with diabetes recommended by UHMS/DAN workshop on our web site at
(Proceedings of the UHMS/DAN 2005 June 19 Workshop. Durham, NC:Divers Alert Network; 2005.)

Table 1: Guidelines for Recreational Diving with Diabetes - Summary Form 1
Selection and Surveillance
• Age ≥18 years (16 years if in special training program)
• Delay diving after start/change in medication
- 3 months with oral hypoglycemic agents (OHA)
- 1 year after initiation of insulin therapy
• No episodes of hypoglycemia or hyperglycemia requiring intervention from a third party for at
least one year
• No history of hypoglycemia unawareness
• HbA1c ≤9% no more than one month prior to initial assessment and at each annual review
- values >9% indicate the need for further evaluation and possible modification of therapy
• No significant secondary complications from diabetes
• Physician/Diabetologist should carry out annual review and determine that diver has good
understanding of disease and effect of exercise
- in consultation with an expert in diving medicine, as required
• Evaluation for silent ischemia for candidates >40 years of age
- after initial evaluation, periodic surveillance for silent ischemia can be in accordance with
accepted local/national guidelines for the evaluation of diabetics
• Candidate documents intent to follow protocol for divers with diabetes and to cease diving and
seek medical review for any adverse events during diving possibly related to diabetes
Scope of Diving
• Diving should be planned to avoid
- depths >100 fsw (30 msw)
- durations >60 minutes
- compulsory decompression stops
- overhead environments (e.g., cave, wreck penetration)
- situations that may exacerbate hypoglycemia (e.g., prolonged cold and arduous dives)
• Dive buddy/leader informed of diver’s condition and steps to follow in case of problem
• Dive buddy should not have diabetes
Glucose Management on the Day of Diving
• General self-assessment of fitness to dive
• Blood glucose (BG) ≥150 mg·dL -1 (8.3 mmol·L -1 ), stable or rising, before entering the water
- complete a minimum of three pre-dive BG tests to evaluate trends
 60 minutes, 30 minutes and immediately prior to diving
- alterations in dosage of OHA or insulin on evening prior or day of diving may help
• Delay dive if BG
- 300 mg·dL -1 (16.7 mmol·L -1 )
• Rescue medications
- carry readily accessible oral glucose during all dives
- have parenteral glucagon available at the surface
• If hypoglycemia noticed underwater, the diver should surface (with buddy), establish positive
buoyancy, ingest glucose and leave the water
• Check blood sugar frequently for 12-15 hours after diving
• Ensure adequate hydration on days of diving
• Log all dives (include BG test results and all information pertinent to diabetes management) 1 For full text see: Pollock NW, Uguccioni DM, Dear GdeL, eds. Diabetes and recreational diving:guidelines for the future. Proceedings of the UHMS/DAN 2005 June 19 Workshop. Durham, NC: Divers Alert Network; 2005.


Study Advises Smoking Cessation in Divers

Filed under: Interesting Newsscubadoc @ 10:27 am

In an article in the journal Chest titled “Decline of FEV1 in Scuba Divers”, a study is reported by Tetzlaff et al that puts to rest the supposition that prolonged diving causes lung problems.
(Kay Tetzlaff, MD; Jens Theysohn, MD; Caroline Stahl; Sabine Schlegel, PhD; Andreas Koch, MD and Claus M. Muth, MD)
Abstract of the article
Correspondence to: Kay Tetzlaff, MD, Medical Clinic and Polyclinic, Department of Sports Medicine, University of Tuebingen Silcherstrasse 5, 72076 Tübingen, Germany; e-mail:

Study objectives: Obstructive changes in lung function have been reported with cumulative scuba diving exposure. The aim of this study was to investigate the decline in FEV1 in scuba divers over time.

Design: Prospective controlled cohort study.

Setting: German Naval Medical Institute.

Patients: Four hundred sixty-eight healthy, male, military scuba divers and 122 submariners (control subjects) were entered.

Measurements and results: Pulmonary function tests were performed in all subjects on at least three occasions with a minimum interval of 1 year between first and last measurement. The decline in FEV1 was investigated fitting a general linear model to FEV1 across time with a factorial main-effects model for slopes and intercepts with respect to the factors group, smoking status, and baseline FEV1. Mean baseline age of all subjects was 32 years (SD, 9.1), and mean body mass index was 24.7 kg/m2 (SD, 2.4). Subjects were followed up for 5 years (range, 1 to 9 years) on average. Baseline FEV1 exceeded the predicted values in both divers and nondiving control subjects. There was no significant difference in the decline of FEV1 between divers and control subjects. Over time, FEV1 declined more rapidly in smokers than in nonsmokers (p = 0.0064) and declined more rapidly also in subjects with a baseline FEV1 above average compared to subjects below average (p Conclusions: The data indicate that scuba diving is not associated with an accelerated decline in FEV1. Combined exposure to diving and smoking contributes to the fall of FEV1; therefore, smoking cessation is advised for divers.

Full text of the article.

Thanks to Dr. Howard Hommler who sent us the article.

Related links on scubadoc Diving Medicine Online
‘Smoking and Diving’

Cigarette smoking and decompression illness severity: a retrospective study in
recreational divers.

Should Divers Smoke and vice versa


May 3, 2007

Ideal Body Weight for Diving, Scuba Calories

Filed under: Interesting Newsscubadoc @ 2:14 pm

In response to a question about diving and obesity - here is an answer giving the ideal body weight for diving:

Edmonds, in the book, Diving and Subaquatic Medicine, states that weight should be less than 20 % above the average ideal weight for age, height and build. Obesity is undesirable because it increases the risk of decompression illness, there being an increase in nitrogen absorption of 4.5 times in fat. Sport diving is more lenient than commercial in this regard in that the bottom times can be reduced according to the percentage that the candidate’s weight exceeds that expected for height and build.

Body mass index (BMI) is a method for determining the percentage of fat. It is determined by weight in Kg divided by height in meters squared.

In some areas of the world where medical fitness is more stringently regulated than the US, a high BMI (body mass index) would deter one from diving. Complicating conditions of adiposity include diabetes mellitus, dyslipidemia or hypertension and their associations with coronary artery disease. The BMI is important to divers due to the fact that people with high BMI are more prone to coronary artery disease and an untoward coronary event while diving. A BMI above 30 kg/m2 is thought to be excessively risky for diving. Of course, measured %BF can sometimes show that the diver is quite large and muscular and this needs to be taken into consideration. Figure your BMI by going to this web site:

In one of our newsletters, reference was made to the approximate number of calories burned while scuba diving. The figures quoted (393 kcal for a person weighing 130 pounds, 413 kcal for 155 pounds, 604 kcal for 190 pounds) were all estimates but seemed inordinately high to some people who felt that scuba diving was essentially a sedate activity in a weightless milieu.

In researching a valid answer to this question we came up with some data that hopefully explains the burning of oxygen - and thus calories (kcal). There are quite a few variables in the equation, such as water temperature, level of fitness of the individual, size and body configuration of the diver, current, surge and buoyancy. Swimming energy is also proportional to the square of the velocity and workloads for higher use are tolerated by only the very fit.

Maximum burning of oxygen in the very fit is 40ml/kg/minute (VO2). Resting VO2 is 3.5ml/kg/min. or 1.5-2 kcal (1 MET). All things being equal, the act of scuba diving at a speed of 1 knot burns about 25 ml/kg/min of O2 (about 60% of maximum), the diver moving about 70 feet per minute. (Bove, ’Diving Medicine’, 1997).

A resting value of 3.5ml/kg/minute interpolated to 25 ml/kg/min is 8 kcals/min. A diver swimming for one hour at this rate would burn 480 calories, depending upon any or all of the variables noted above. See also: Nutrition and Diving


Performance of Infusion Pumps in Hyperbaric Conditions

Filed under: Interesting Newsscubadoc @ 2:11 pm

Performance of Infusion Pumps in Hyperbaric Conditions

Abstract [Full Text]

Background: Many hyperbaric facilities use infusion pumps inside the chamber. It is therefore important to ensure that this equipment will perform accurately during hyperbaric conditions. The authors tested the function and accuracy of the Imed 965 and Infutec 520 volumetric infusion pumps, the Easy-pump MZ-257 peristaltic infusion pump, and the Graseby 3100 syringe pump.

Methods: The authors calculated the deviations of infused volumes at low and high rates (12-18 and 60-100 ml/h) on three different hyperbaric protocols (up to 2.5, 2.8, and 6 atmospheres absolute [ATA]), resembling a standard hyperbaric oxygen treatment and US Navy treatment tables used for decompression illness and for arterial gas embolism. Two examples of each pump model were examined in every experiment.

Results: The Easy-pump MZ-257 failed to function completely beyond a chamber pressure of 1.4 ATA, making it unsuitable for use inside the hyperbaric chamber. The Graseby 3100 failed to respond to all keyboard functions at 2.5-2.8 ATA, making it unsuitable for use in most hyperbaric treatments. The Imed 965 performed within an acceptable volume deviation (≤10%) during most hyperbaric conditions. During the compression phase of the profiles used, and for the low infusion rates only, exceptional volume deviations of 20-40% were monitored. The Infutec 520 demonstrated an acceptable deviation (within 10%) throughout all the hyperbaric profiles used, unaffected by changes in ambient pressure or infusion rate.

Conclusions: Commercially available infusion pumps operating during hyperbaric conditions demonstrate substantial variations in performance and accuracy. It is therefore important that the hyperbaric facility staff make a careful examination of such instruments to anticipate possible deviations in the accuracy of the equipment during use.


Reactivated and Maintained by Centrum Nurkowe Aquanaut Diving