Would you know what to do if?
The following are Case studies.
A diver made a rapid ascent from 177ft and arrived at the surface having missed approximately 30 min of mandatory decompression.After returning aboard a dive boat, a diver experienced chest pains, ‘pins and needles’ and loss of sensation in his legs. He had made a dive to a maximum depth of 89 ft for 25 min and had a normal ascent. Would you know what to do if a diver had surfaced unconscious from diving 30ft, while you were on a liveaboard and no one was medically trained, would you know what checks to do on the diver to find out why he/she was unconscious? On surfacing a diver felt unwell and developed the following, cold and clammy skin ( water temp was 78°F), rapid heart rate, rapid breathing, thirst, red rash on the arm, anxiety, nausea, and confusion.
Unfortunately, only one of the divers received prompt care and recovered well due to someone having advanced first aid, and was able to treat the diver immediately.
All of the above events are true and took place last year; however, these are only a handful of accidents that happen each year. As much as we try and prevent accidents, accidents still occur. Do you think you are prepared enough?
Let’s have a look at the 1st and 2nd incident:
The first step is to run a neuro exam. The aim of this is to ensure that timely treatment and care can be provided as soon as possible. If a neuro exam is poorly run, then there is an increased risk of harm to the diver. We want to create divers who can care for divers when things do go wrong, not if they might go wrong.
A patient who is unconscious does not help the rescuer that much, as the only information that is gathered is what the rescuer can see, smell, or touch. If the patient were conscious, the patient would then be able to tell us what was wrong with them.
As we are eager to help this patient, knowing what to look for in an unconscious patient is being like a detective.
As you are a diver yourself the first thing is, get someone to check the diving history on the dive computer, while you look at the following Vitals:Check patients’ vital signs then, Check the response of the patient by using AVPU, Alert responds to Voice, returns to Pain, Unresponsive Check the patient’s pupils, are they (Equal, round and reacting to light) Check posture of the patient and consider using the Glasgow coma scale (head injuries and Stroke) Lastly is the patient Diabetic and so check Blood Sugar levels if possible
The patient is conscious, and that helps the rescuer as the patient can talk, and therefore, they able to get a medical history and Signs and Symptoms. You are almost there with that detective work. However, we need to know what condition can produce those signs and symptoms. This Patient is in shock! Which type of shock? Is there any evidence of blood loss? Does the person have a history of cardiac problems? Has the patient had a spinal injury? Does the patient have diabetes? Or due to the rash on the arm, does the patient have an allergy?
These are just a few of the many skills used to help identify what may be wrong with the given case studies.
As I mentioned, we can’t prevent accidents, but we can prepare you to get the skill to feel confident and have the knowledge to understand what is happening to your fellow diver and have the ability to treat your fellow diver with the care they so deserve whilst awaiting EMS.
These are the reasons why I am confident that learning new medical skills by taking the Diving Emergency Medical course is gaining one of those invaluable skills everyone needs.
So where to go now, go to the following link where you will get more information on the course and then sign up, https://thedivermedic.thinkific.com/courses/EFR-DEMR
Attention All Active EFR Instructors…… Would you like to become an EFR DEMR Instructor? Do you have a medical background like EMT, DMT, Nurse, Paramedic, Doctor or equivalent. How about joining our team of DEMR Instructors around the world and get the knowledge out there. Please remember this course is not owned by EFR and was created by The Diver Medic. So, you will need to go through The Diver Medic to get approved to be an Instructor
Here are two locations you can attend your Practical training, other venues coming soon.