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A personal case of DCS...


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20 replies to this topic

#16 DoctorB

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Posted 08 August 2012 - 06:02 PM

All dives with Nitrox 32 (except as noted), in drysuit with Argon (I was VERY comfortable, and not cold at all)


I'm impressed that you had the foresight to be using Argon!

Do we also understand that you drove home to the Windy City? How far was that and do you think the drive tired you out a bit more like the climb to the surface ? Pete


5 hrs. Stayed hydrated and stopped to eat along the way. The drive home wasn't physically tiring. The trip out of the mine with gear was tiring. I was huffing and puffing by the time I reached the exit.

In the past I doubted how much difference using Argon made. I think it made a significant difference. By the time I was done diving, I was warm and ready to cool off. The people in 7 mm wet suits were shivering at the end of the dive.
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#17 borntodiveit

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 06:58 PM

Great information and one that was addressed in our dive classes via textbook but such an excellent lesson when it happens to us personally. Thankfully/hopefully you are completely symptom free now.

I also had DCS, fortunately for me, it was a mild case and completely reversed after one 60' (6 hr) chamber dive. I discovered that I was not as healthy in my mid-40's as I though rather I was enemic, dehydrated, exhausted from 2 back-to-back, cold-water trips AND I THOUGHT I FELT STRONG AND GOOD until the tingling in the fronts of my calves & on the tops of my hands occurred 12 hours afterwards. I also learned that many women of my age were becoming bent after perfect, textbook profiles now attributed in part to menapause issues. What further shocked me is that while I lived close to the Calif coast at the time, the local hospital (it was well after midnight & the chamber was a 2 hr drive over high altitude mountain) was clueless to DCS, reluctant to listen to my request for 02 or discuss with DAN until hours later. The next morning I drove to Northridge for treatment. My experience with the hospital, personnel and fellow female diver was exceptional. I learned much and am convinced I am a better diver and dive buddy as a result.

Thank you for sharing your story.

Dorie


DoctorB.....So sorry to hear this happened! Can you tell us what your symptoms were?


I was sore after diving (Bonne Terre Mine). If you haven't been there, it's cold (58 degrees), and the dive deck is about 110 feet below ground. So between dives it's a long walk up to the surface, especially after the last dive carrying your gear. So I was sore from the climbing. The next day, that soreness started getting better, but I had a new deep ache in my shoulders, and paresthesias (tingling and numbness) in my hands and to a lesser extent in my feet. Interestingly shoulder ache and peripheral paresthesias are the most common DCS symptoms. It would be VERY easy to blow it off as overexertion. I went to bed and the next morning it wasn't any better, so I quickly got over my denial and called the DAN emergency number and soon thereafter, dive 100 was under way (attached). The symptoms disappeared at 60 feet on pure O2, but returned after treatment. So far:

Dive 100 - USN Table 6 (4 hrs)
Dive 101 - USN Table 5 with extensions
Dive 102 - USN Table 5
Dive 103 - USN Table 6 (I had new neuro symptoms, paresthesias throughout both legs, after dive 102)
Dive 104 - USN Table 5

I'm glad I got it treated right away. The doc and DAN folks were telling me that the longer you let it go, the less successful treatment is, and it more likely you will never be able to dive again. Also, the chamber is nothing to fear. It's just VERY boring.

In the mean time, I can't fly for a month, and can't dive for two months.

Have fun in T&C. Wish I could be there blowing bubbles, celebrating my B-day and Dive 100 in SD style! O/W I'll see you all in Bonaire in the spring.



#18 WreckWench

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Posted 25 December 2012 - 05:54 PM

Dorie you provide some additional insight that is quite important... we are OFTEN less healthy than we think and we are often in denial.

It is soooooooooo important to be extra careful... drink more water, get more rest, and take it easy. :thankyou:

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#19 DoctorB

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Posted 01 January 2013 - 08:27 PM

Thanks for sharing. DCS symptoms are so easy to ignore, since they can be so vague. Exercise has a protective effect against getting bent (although strenuous activity should be avoided immediately before or after a dive.

My incident was the wake up call I needed to get in better shape and lose weight. (I've lost 28 lbs since I got bent). I'm also happy to report that my PFO study was normal. (I was going to quit diving if I had a PFO). I threw together a quick video of my PFO study if anyone is interested ( ).

Basically when they do the study they put an ultrasound probe (about the size of a power inflater hose) down your throat, inject air bubbles thru an iv in your arm and watch for them to show up in the right atrium, but not the left atrium. It wasn't the most fun experience.




Dorie you provide some additional insight that is quite important... we are OFTEN less healthy than we think and we are often in denial.

It is soooooooooo important to be extra careful... drink more water, get more rest, and take it easy. Posted Image



#20 WreckWench

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 09:05 AM

Great video and very informative. Even more important is the loss of 28 pounds...THAT IS GREAT!!! I hope you'll join our 2013 fitness challenge and help the rest of us via your experiences! :cool1: and :respect:

Contact me directly at Kamala@SingleDivers.com for your private or group travel needs or 864-557-6079 AND don't miss SD's 2018-2021 Trips! ....here! Most are once in a lifetime opportunities...don't miss the chance to go!!
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#21 TX65

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Posted 19 July 2015 - 06:44 PM

Back in the 80's, I got hit following 165 fsw test dives in a chamber... Yes, even in a chamber you can get hit. 

 

Was driving home from the shop about 2 hours after the last dive, noticed pain in left knee and tunnel vision so I pulled into the local EMS station and explained the situation.  I had been trained as a hyperbaric medic so knew what was going on, but EMS would not listen to me or give O2 for the ride to one of the main trauma centers who wondered why I was being brought there when the only medical chamber in the area at the time was another 50 miles south.  

 

Fortunately, while the doctors tried to figure out what to do, they slide my gurney next to a phone and I was able to reach the company who had a large chamber set-up in the shop 10 minutes from the Trauma Center and they had me brought to them.

 

Pushed straight to 165 few and got complete relief in 10 minutes.   Did a full USN Table 6 and followed that 12 hours later by a USN Table 5.

 

Had to meet a Hyperbaric Physician twice over the next 2 months and was given clearance to dive.   

 

Only explanation for my incident was the built in incident rate that was within the USN tables.   While at the time, I was in peak physical condition, it is important to remember that most diving research was done using very fit US Navy divers with minimal body fat.   Even as fit as those divers are, they experience DSC, it just goes with the territory.   While we can all hope to be as fit as a US Navy diver, fact is we probably carry a bit more body fat and are nowhere near in the physical condition that they are.    

 

Since my incident and only diving for pleasure anymore (no longer work), I dive NITROX often using air tables for the extra safety margin, stay very hydrated before, during and after diving and allow one full day between my last day of diving and my travel day and boarding a flight.    So far it has worked and never had another incident. 






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