Divers Blog

Put Your Students’ Minds at Ease
DAN is a great resource for your students and new divers. The organization can answer their questions, provide support and evacuation services in an emergency and offer crucial reassurance.

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COVID-19 and Diving: March 2021 Update
As the medical community has learned more about COVID-19 in the past year, the implications of the disease for divers are now better understood.

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An Accident at Sea
Accidents don’t take vacations, and it’s smart to be prepared for anything, no matter where in the world you go. While DAN is best known for helping divers, its emergency evacuation benefit can cover non-diving-related emergencies as well.

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Dive Business Tips: Staff Health and Safety
As a business owner, safety in the workplace is your responsibility, and this requires you to perform an appropriate risk assessment to identify and manage workplace hazards.

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Well, This Bites: Prevention & Treatment of Marine Bites
Getting bit bites. When marine bites do happen, however, proper knowledge will help with treatments.

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Safer Dive Boat Operations
With attention to a few important details, dive professionals can dramatically improve divers' safety and enjoyment during boat diving activities.

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Breathing Gas Quality Assurance
It is the top responsibility of a dive operator to provide quality breathing gas, and have systems in place should there be contamination. Learn more about breathing gas quality assurance.

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Shake off the Dust and Return to Diving
The pandemic of 2020 forced many divers to cancel trips and take a step back from diving. As a new season opens and diving may be possible again, slowly crank up your fitness.

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Use Peer Pressure for Good
Being your own advocate can be incredibly hard and isolating when up against peer pressure. But you can find empowerment and use peer pressure as a force for good within the dive community.

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Dive Business Tips: Creating a Safer Retail Shop
Now more than ever, public spaces involve some degree of risk. Here are some recommendations for improving safety in areas of your business that customers frequent.

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Simple Jitters or Enduring Anxiety?
Anxiety is long lasting and does not go away as easily as stress. And mild anxiety could prevent you from diving. Learn more.

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Emergency Action Plans: When Things Go Wrong
Emergency action plans (EAPs) are essential risk mitigation tools for dive operators and dive professionals to limit liability and ensure the safety of divers, staff and the public. Learn how to set up an effective EAP, and download a free assessment.

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Avoid the Chill
Hypothermia can affect anyone, so it’s something to be mindful of as you prepare for deeper dives, longer dives, more dives or dives in water colder than you’re used to.

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Do Wildfires Affect Breathing Gas?
In 2018, DAN Research investigated the impact of wildfires on air quality around several California and Oregon dive shops, and inspected the air of recently filled cylinders. The results are still relevant today.

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Environmental Considerations for Disinfection
Disinfection is critical to keep everyone healthy, but with the increase in cleaning, some are worried about environmental considerations. Can you disinfect properly and protect the environment?

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Why DAN Does Not Share Chamber Availability
DAN frequently consults on care, transport and hyperbaric treatment for injured divers but does not provide chamber availability or location information. Read why and learn procedures should you need a chamber.

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Dive Business Tips: Compressor Room & Fill Station Safety
If not properly set up and maintained, compressor rooms and fill stations can be among the most hazardous areas of a dive business. Get the facts on proper compressor room maintenance.

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Operating Safely in the Time of Coronavirus: Part IV
Coronavirus has upended the dive industry. However, with additional safety protocols and attention to detail, shops can operate in ways that keep customers and staff safe.

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Five Considerations for Drysuit Divers
When considering a drysuit, considerations need to be made to ensure personal health and safety. Skin conditions, constriction, buoyancy and other potential issues need to be weighed.

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CPR and COVID-19
COVID-19 can be contracted by coming into contact with droplets of bodily fluid from an infected person — which makes performing CPR incredibly risky. There are steps you can take, however, if you're in a situation where CPR needs to be given.

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Recognizing Lung Conditions
Acute lung conditions are some of the most dramatic and life threatening injuries found in the diving environment, and it is vital for all divers to be able to quickly recognize and react to them.

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Treating Decompression Sickness (The Bends)
Decompression sickness (DCS) is one of the most common problems reported to DAN. Do you know appropriate actions to take if you suspect DCS?

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DCS or Fin Foot?
Fin foot is a common condition in which feet become swollen and sore after a dive. New divers, especially, are susceptible. Learn more about the condition and how to treat.

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Diving With Arrhythmias
Arrhythmias are conditions in which a heart beats irregularly, and they can pose serious health concerns. However, with guidance from a medical professional, divers may still be able to safely dive.

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Scuba Diving and Diabetes
Many people with controlled diabetes can enjoy scuba diving. However, considerations need to be made to ensure diver safety and divers should understand their risks.

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Minor Mishaps and Maladies
As a dive professional, you know that planning, preparation and careful decision-making are key risk management tools for preventing serious dive incidents and injuries during training. Because of this, the “worst” injuries most student divers face are often bumps and bruises that can be addressed quickly and easily.

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How to Avoid Rapid Ascents and Arterial Gas Embolism
Arterial gas embolism (AGE) is one of the most serious medical emergencies a diver may experience. Learning about the risks associated with AGE will help aid in prevention.

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Waterborne Illnesses
When you take the right precautions, you can protect yourself against microbes that could cause future infections or illnesses.

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Seasickness Prevention and Treatment
Everyone is susceptible to seasickness but there is no cure. However, there are ways to prevent and manage the condition.

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It’s the Little Things
The ocean is full of hazardous invertebrates that could cause serious injuries. Beware of fire corals, cone snails, jellyfish and other seemingly pretty creatures.

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Guidelines for Lifelong Medical Fitness to Dive
Do you know when to get checked by your doctor? This guide will give you the information you need to ensure you are fit to dive throughout the rest of your life.

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Stay Cool: Managing Heat Illness in Divers
Even below the water's surface, you can still be impacted by the sun's rays. Learn how to stay safe and cool in the summer heat.

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Seven Tips for Preventing COVID-19 While Diving
Wash your hands, disinfect gear, heed local warnings. There are just a few of the precautions divers can take to ensure they do not contract COVID-19.

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Risk Factors For Heart Disease
Heart health is essential to the safety of all divers. The best way that you can protect yourself is to ensure that you understand the primary risk factors of heart disease and regularly consult with your physician.

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COVID-19: DAN Member FAQs
The COVID-19 pandemic has left many DAN members with questions regarding insurance policies and potential trip cancellations. Get your questions answered here.

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Why You Really Need to Maintain Your First Aid Expertise
Disaster could strike anywhere and you need to be prepared. While you may have been CPR certified years ago, you need to maintain the certification.

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Dive Accident Insurance Versus Travel Insurance: Do You Need Both?
As a diver, do you need both diver insurance and health insurance? To determine that answer, remember that very few travel insurance plans cover scuba diving incidents.

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Why Experience Matters
Do you stay close to your buddy while underwater? Read this case summary of why it's important to always have a dive buddy.

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Ear Equalization Guidelines for Scuba Divers
Have you ever experienced an ear problem when scuba diving? You’re not alone. Nearly 50 percent of calls to DAN's Emergency Hotline are related to ear problems.

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Four Reasons Every Diver Should Be a DAN Member
When you join Divers Alert Network, you get valuable benefits and support the diving community at the same time.

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A Diver’s Guide to Insurance Terms
To help divers make an informed decision about whether they need dive accident insurance coverage, we created a diver’s guide to insurance terms.

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Inspect Your Oxygen Unit and First Aid Kit
Most divers appreciate that first aid and oxygen kits are essential equipment. However, not everyone considers that many of the contents are perishable and need to be replaced periodically. Regardless of the size or type of your oxygen or first aid kit, a regular inspection (at least annually) is imperative.

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How to Clean Your Scuba Equipment
There are many benefits to using clean, well-cared-for scuba equipment. Properly maintained dive gear can last longer and is less likely to malfunction and cause a dive accident.

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Honesty and the Dive Medical Form
The Diver Medical Participant Questionnaire is a set of unified standards established to provide consistency in the minimum health standards required for training scuba divers.

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Malaria and Mosquito Bite Prevention for Divers
Mosquitoes suck. These pesky creatures can carry malaria —a deadly disease. Learn how to reduce your risks of malaria.

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Gear Maintenance: Protect Your Investment and Prevent Dive Accidents
Most divers understand the value of preventative maintenance, yet many fail to have their dive gear serviced. Keep your gear in tip-top shape to avoid serious equipment malfunctions.

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Stopping the Sting
Marine life stings are an uncommon, but an unfortunate reality of exploring the aquatic world. Know how to mitigate the risks, treat the injuries and keep yourself sting-free and happily diving this season.

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Women’s Health In Diving
Women make up a large percentage of the diving population. It is important to fully understand the issues of women's health and safety.

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Fitness for Diving
When you keep up your physical fitness out of water, you ensure you can continue to dive. But what does fitness for diving truly mean?

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Top 5 Reasons You Want A DAN Professional Membership
Dive pros can benefit from DAN's newly developed programs and enhanced services. These programs will keep everyone safe and happy.

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Don’t Let Heart Disease End Your Diving Career
Heart disease can impact your ability to dive. Many divers are unaware that they have heart disease until it is too late.

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Medical Emergencies Abroad
Do you know what to do if you have an emergency abroad? Do you know how to access emergency care? Does your insurance cover you with emergency transportation and treatment?

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Top 5 Factors That Increase Your Risk of the Bends
The bends, also known as decompression sickness (DCS), occurs when nitrogen bubbles form in the blood, often causing severe joint pain.

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How to Create an Effective Emergency Action Plan (EAP)
A basic emergency action plan outlines the steps first responders should take in a diving or nondiving emergency. The plan should be clear enough that an untrained bystander could assist if needed.

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How Good is Your Dive Emergency Action Plan?
You have an emergency action plan in place. But how good is it, really? Don't wait until a disaster strikes to put it to the test.

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The Do’s and Don’ts of Dive Etiquette
Good diving etiquette is important in a social sport like diving in building and maintaining trust with your diving companions.

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6 Common Questions About Women’s Health and Scuba Diving
There are physiological differences in women that can affect their diving experience. Here are six common questions pertaining to women's health.

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Health Concerns for Divers Over 50
Getting older doesn’t have to mean give up on diving, but divers over 50 should be aware of common medical issues that may interfere with safe diving.

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Top 3 Reported Diving Illnesses and Injuries
Scuba diving accidents are rare, but they do happen. Knowing how to recognize and appropriately respond to diving injuries may benefit you or someone you care about.

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Myths About Dive Accident Insurance and Diving Accidents
Think technical divers and new divers are the most at-risk for an accident? Think again. But plan for accidents with the right dive insurance.

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Top 6 Signs of a Serious Diving Injury
It is important to recognize the signs of serious dive injuries. From chest pain to paralysis, here are common symptoms and what they could mean.

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COVID-19: First Aid Training Recommendations From DAN
First aid courses require hands-on learning, and as these first-person classes resume, there are considerations that need to be made. If you're teaching first aid classes, here is how to ensure student and instructor safety.

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Disinfection of Scuba Equipment and COVID-19
COVID-19 spreads via respiratory secretions in a variety of ways including aerosolized droplets expelled by coughing or sneezing. Learn how to properly disinfect scuba equipment.

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Dive Operations and COVID-19: Prepping for Return FAQs
The following Q&As have been compiled from questions sent in by divers, dive professionals and operators and are intended to help everyone get ready for a safe return to the water.

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COVID-19: Surface Survival Times
Information on COVID-19 is updating rapidly, but some is known about how long the virus lives on surfaces. Knowing these times is a vital part in reducing the risk of transmission.

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DAN’s Quick Guide to Properly Disinfecting Dive Gear
Disinfection remains a key part in reducing the spread of COVID-19. DAN released a guide on how to properly disinfection dive equipment to keep divers of all abilities safe and healthy.

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Could Use of a Sleep Aid Result in OxTox?
Seizure due to CNS oxygen toxicity in divers breathing a hyperoxic gas mix underwater is a very likely to cause drowning. This study looked at the link between melatonin and oxygen toxicity.

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Elite Breath-Hold Divers and Short-Term Memory
The superior performance of elite breath-hold athletes could be attributed to their inherited biophysical characteristics, and some metabolic enhancement induced by training. However, they could be susceptible to short-term memory impairment.

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Getting Closer to a Complete Understanding of Decompression Sickness
While we know that there is an association between post-decompression occurrences of gas bubbles in body tissues and decompression sickness (DCS), we still do not know where the bubbles originate from, why they do not occur in all divers on the same dive, and how they lead to DCS.

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Identifying Swimming Induced Pulmonary Edema
Swimming induced pulmonary edema (SIPE) may occur in healthy subjects during or immediately after swimming and exercise. If not recognized, symptoms which are typically initially mild, may quickly worsen and become life threatening.

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Venous Gas Bubbles in Breath-Hold Divers
Venous gas bubbles in breath-hold divers remains a focus of researchers. Data from bubbles detected in divers will be used to better understand and correct decompression algorithms.

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Breathing Gas Contamination
Breathing gas contamination is a serious problem, with serious symptoms. However, health effects differ based upon the contaminant. Learn more about the symptoms and how to prevent.

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What’s Left to Learn About Bubbles?
New technologies may help us to learn more about post-decompression bubbles dynamics and get closer to the personalized approach in prevention of decompression sickness (DCS).

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Outcomes of Decompression Illness
While it is generally accepted that sooner recompression is associated with better outcomes, the urgency of treatment may not be same for all cases.

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What is the Common Risk Faced by Recreation, Technical and Breath-Hold Divers?
Immersion pulmonary edema (IPE) may be more common than previously reported. Several studies analyzed different kinds of diving and the prevalence of IPE.

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New Decompression Model Based on Occurrence of Gas Bubbles in Small Arteries
The current thought is that gas bubbles originate on the venous side and pass to the arterial side either through intra-cardiac (PFO) or intra-pulmonary shunt. A group of scientists proposed a third mechanism.

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Repeated DCS and the Efficacy of Counseling
A study on Belgian decompression sickness (DCS) cases looked at patent foramen novale (PFO) presence, patency of present PFOs, and personality traits in divers who suffered cerebral DCS one or more times.

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Screening Test for Susceptibility to Immersion Pulmonary Edema
Immersion pulmonary edema (IPE) or swimming-induced pulmonary edema (SIPE) manifests with coughing, blood in sputum, difficulty breathing and a drop in the oxygen content of arterial blood.

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Medicating Against DCS
Studies describing gas in the portal veins of animals has enabled researchers to develop a model that predictably reproduces portal vein embolization. The decompression stress in the model is severe enough to cause many bubbles all over the body, including the portal vein and liver tissue.

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Does Diving Damage the Brain?
Brain injuries in divers may be more prevalent than previously thought and could potentially occur without a manifestation of acute decompression illness. Read more about this study and its findings.

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Breath-Hold Diving, Circulating Gas Bubbles and Neurological Symptoms
The findings of study authors proves the hypothesis that breath-hold diving may generate venous gas bubbles. The true relationship of VGE and post-dive neurological symptoms is not known.

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What’s the Link Between the Dive Profile and the Bends?
The dive profile may be the key in figuring out why some dives result in decompression sickness and others do not. This study also shows that the effect of depth-time on outcome of decompression is overshadowing possible effects of other observed factors.

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Endothelial Cell Function in Diving
The entire story of endothelial dysfunction and decompression sickness (DCS) sometimes is similar to the dilemma of chicken and egg: what is first, the bubbles that cause injury of endothelium, or the endothelial dysfunction that enhances occurrence of bubbles?

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How is Eustachian Dysfunction Related to Inner-Ear Barotrauma?
Normal Eustachian tube (ET) function is important for fitness to dive. Eustachian tube dysfunction may result with ear injury during diving.

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Can Drinking Wine Provide Benefits to Divers?
Historically, alcohol was used to treat bends in Greek sponge divers. In the late 1980s attempts to verify the possible beneficial effects of ethanol on prevention of decompression sickness (DCS) led to prevailing opinions that there was no proven benefit and that divers should not drink and dive.

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Participation in Recreational Scuba Diving
Every year the Sports & Fitness Industry Association (SFIA) releases a report that reviews participation data on various sports and recreational activities. The 2015 report pertains to 2014 participation data and is based on 10,778 online interviews among one million US online panel members. The survey asked about demographics and participation in various physical activities and sports.

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Sudden Death and Divers
Survival of sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) is very low. According to DAN data, nearly 1/3 of reported scuba fatalities may be caused by SCA.

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Gradient Factors Can Be Used To Control For Depth-Time Exposure And Alleviate The Risk of Decompression Sickness In Recreational Diving
The dive profile may be the key in figuring out why some dives result in decompression sickness and others do not. This study also shows that the effect of depth-time on outcome of decompression is overshadowing possible effects of other observed factors.

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Melatonin & Susceptibility to CNS Oxygen Toxicity
Seizure due to CNS oxygen toxicity in divers breathing a hyperoxic gas mix underwater is a very likely to cause drowning. This study looked at the link between melatonin and oxygen toxicity.

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The Cause of Skin Mottling After Diving
Skin mottling is often a manifestation of "skin bends." While it is likely related to gas occurring in the body, there is no generally accepted explanation why the mottling occurs. But there may be a hypothesis.

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Coronary Calcium Scans and Heart Attacks
As the diving population ages, there is a hypothesis that the completion of a coronary calcium scan could help reduce the risk of heart attacks while diving.

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Can a Test Identify Divers Who May Be More Susceptible to DCS?
Are some divers more susceptible to decompression sickness (DCS) than others? Could a test be created to see the difference between bubblers and nonbubblers?

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Bubble Production in Divers Who Have Had DCS
Some divers may be more prone to decompression sickness (DCS) than others. What is not known, however, if previous DCS diagnosis and recover makes someone even more susceptible to contract it again.

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Apple’s Role in Mobile Medical Applications
Mobile health technology has been around for a long time and it has revolutionized how we do...everything. Learn more about Apple's role and how this tech can be a force for good in diving.

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Sensors and Senses
Sensors have revolutionized wearable tech making health monitoring so much easier. And, these breakthroughs can help the dive community.

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Neurological Injury After Breath-Hold Diving Related to Gas Bubble in Brain
Repeated breath-hold diving may cause neurological symptoms and even permanent brain injury. Learn more about the link with breath-hold diving.

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Use of Transcriptomes to Study Stress and Acclimation in Diving
An emerging approach to help study decompression sickness, is analyzing a diver's blood to identify certain markers. Read more about the results of an ongoing 2014 study.

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Can Crystalline Salt Reduce the Size of Scuba Equipment?
A crystalline salt might be able to reduce the size of scuba equipment because of its natural ability to uptake and story oxygen in high concentrations. Learn more.

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Oil Particulate and Carbon Dioxide in Divers’ Breathing Gas
Presently, to monitor for oil particulate in recreational breathing gas, dive operators can take safety filling precautions, such as not filling tanks near combustible engines and maintaining the compressor.

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Validation of Tasmania’s Aquaculture Industry “Yo-Yo” Diving Schedules
Tasmania's aquaculture industry follows "yo-yo" diving schedules and they were validated in 2014. Learn more.

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