Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

Overview Incidence Risk Factors Symptoms Evaluation Treatment Home Care decongestants pain control warning signs Prevention Underlying Cause Types ascent injury pneumothorax reverse squeeze descent injury

Scuba Injuries Overview

What are scuba injuries?
A person with a scuba injury has damage to the body caused by changes in pressure that occur during underwater diving. Pressure on the body increases as a diver descends deeper into the water. The body may be unable to equalize the pressure between the water and the pressure inside a cavity, such as the middle ear, sinuses or lungs. Large differences in pressure can result in scuba injuries. About 3 out of 10,000 dives results in severe scuba injuries.

What are the symptoms of scuba injuries?
Symptoms of mild scuba injuries may include ear pain, eye pain, facial pain, sinus pain, dental pain, or excessive gas. Symptoms of a severe scuba injury may include chest pain, difficulty breathing, joint pains, severe muscle aches, neck swelling, facial swelling, or chest swelling. Additional symptoms of severe scuba injuries may include sudden arm numbness, arm weakness, leg numbness, leg weakness, facial weakness, difficulty swallowing, difficulty speaking, difficulty walking, a change in vision, or loss of coordination.

How does the doctor treat scuba injuries?
Treatment for scuba injuries depends on the type of injury. Treatment for scuba injuries may include marine wound care, decongestant medications, narcotic pain medications, or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications for pain. Additional treatment for severe scuba injuries may include oxygen therapy and emergency hyperbaric therapy.

Continue to Scuba Injuries Incidence

Last Updated: Sep 13, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Scuba Injuries References
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