[abstract] SELF-REPORTED HEALTH COMPLAINTS IN DIVERS

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[abstract] SELF-REPORTED HEALTH COMPLAINTS IN DIVERS

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Title: [abstract] SELF-REPORTED HEALTH COMPLAINTS IN DIVERS
Author: Risberg, J; Dalaker, TO; Fismen, S; Furnes, M; Irgens, E; Thorsen, E
Abstract: BACKGROUND: Several previous studies have reported long term sequelae of decompression illness (DCI). A number of studies suggest approx.50percent prevalence of persisting symptoms though the reported range is large (0-100percent). The objective of the present study was to investigate the prevalence and extent of self-reported health problems in divers treated for DCI. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Postal questionnaires were mailed to 145 divers treated for DCI in Bergen during 1.1.1993 31.12.1997 (case group) and a control group of 276 recreational divers. The questionnaire detailed demographic data, diving experience, the 20-question Goldberg's Health Questionnaire (GHQ) and questions detailing past and present medical problems. RESULTS: A response rate of 50percent and 41percent was achieved in the case and control group, respectively. The case group held more occupational and military divers than the control group (20percent vs. 5percent, p less than 0.05), the two groups shared otherwise equal demographic background. The case group reported longer diving experience, higher total number of dives and deeper maximum depth than the case group. Significantly more cases than controls reported deteriorated health (GHQ sumscore) comparing present status to the situation one year preceding diving training (45percent vs. 21percent, p less than 0.01). Subjective health complaints were reported by 41percent of the case group compared to 17percent of the control group (p less than 0.01). Attention deficits, paraesthesia, mental problems and headache were the most common symptoms reported by the case group. CONCLUSIONS: The findings in this study show that self-reported health remains deteriorated in a large number of subjects after completion of DCI treatment. The prevalence and character of residua are in agreement with previous studies, and complaints of attention deficits, paraesthesias, mental problems and headache should be recognized as possible long term sequelae of DCI.
Description: Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society, Inc. (http://www.uhms.org )
URI: http://archive.rubicon-foundation.org/1738
Date: 2005

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  • UHMS Meeting Abstracts
    This is a collection of the published abstracts from the Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society (UHMS) annual meetings.

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