DECOMPRESSION SICKNESS (DCS)
Symptoms of DCS
- Unusual fatigue
- Skin itch
- Pain in joints and / or muscles of the arms, legs or torso
- Dizziness, vertigo, ringing in the ears
- Numbness, tingling and paralysis
- Shortness of breath
Signs of DCS
- Skin may show a blotchy rash
- Paralysis, muscle weakness
- Difficulty urinating
- Confusion, personality changes, bizarre behavior
- Amnesia, tremors
- Coughing up bloody, frothy sputum
- Collapse or unconsciousness
Prevention of DCS
Recreational divers should dive conservatively, whether they are using dive tables or computers. Experienced divers often select a table depth (versus actual depth) of 10 feet (3 meters) deeper than called for by standard procedure. This practice is highly recommended for all divers, especially when diving in cold water or when diving under strenuous conditions. Computer divers should be cautious in approaching no-decompression limits, especially when diving deeper than 100 feet (30 meters).
HBOT and DCS
Immediate reduction in bubble volume, allowing reperfusion.
Inert gas counter diffusion.
Oxygenation of ischemic tissue and reduction of CNS edema.
Reducing neutrophil adhesion to the capillary endothelium.
ARTERIAL GAS EMBOLISM (AGE)
Symptoms of AGE
- Visual blurring
- Areas of decreased sensation
- Chest pain
Signs of AGE
- Bloody froth from mouth or nose
- Paralysis or weakness
- Cessation of breathing
Prevention of AGE
Diver should relax and breathe normally during ascent. Lung conditions such as asthma, infections, cysts, tumors, scar tissue from surgery or obstructive lung disease may predispose a diver to air embolism.
HBOT and AGE
Reduces bubble size and forces the left over gas outside the circulation
High oxygen pressure washes out unmoving gas from the bubble