[abstract] EXAMINATION OF THE LONG TERM HEALTH IMPACT OF DIVING (THE ELTHI DIVING STUDY): RE-ANALYSIS OF CEREBRAL MRI DATA ALLOWING FOR CONFOUNDING FACTORS

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[abstract] EXAMINATION OF THE LONG TERM HEALTH IMPACT OF DIVING (THE ELTHI DIVING STUDY): RE-ANALYSIS OF CEREBRAL MRI DATA ALLOWING FOR CONFOUNDING FACTORS

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Title: [abstract] EXAMINATION OF THE LONG TERM HEALTH IMPACT OF DIVING (THE ELTHI DIVING STUDY): RE-ANALYSIS OF CEREBRAL MRI DATA ALLOWING FOR CONFOUNDING FACTORS
Author: Murray, AD; Waiter, GD; Macdiarmid, JI; Taylor, CT; Ross, JAS; Watt, SJ; Osman, LM; Crawford, JR; Adie, WR; Lawson, A
Abstract: INTRODUCTION: More divers (18percent 1540) compared to non-diving offshore workers (6percent of 1035) reported "forgetfulness or loss of concentration" in a postal questionnaire. In 2003 we reported to the Society an increased prevalence of subcortical white matter hyperintensities (SCH) in divers if hypertensives were excluded. This data has now been re-analysed allowing for confounding factors with further conclusions. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Three age matched groups were studied, 95 divers with complaint of moderate to severe "forgetfulness or loss of concentration", 97 divers without complaint and 89 offshore workers without complaint. Subjects underwent brain MRI on a 1.5 Tesla system (General Electric). FLAIR images were scored for the presence or absence of SCH and periventricular hyperintensities (PVH). These data were analysed in a logistic regression model adjusted for age, hypertension, alcohol consumption, smoking and decompression illness. T1 weighted volumetric data were analysed on the "Optimised Voxel Based Morphometry Protocol" using Statistical Parametric Mapping 2. Regionally specific differences in grey matter between groups were assessed with an analysis of co-variance, with total brain volume as a confounding variable. RESULTS: Divers were more likely to have SCH than offshore workers (OR 1.92, 95percent CI 1.0-3.67) and divers with complaint were more likely to have PVH (OR 2.17, 95percent CI 1.07-4.43). Within the model there were significant positive relationships between SCH and age and hypertension and between PVH and age. Divers with complaint had significant reduction in grey matter volume in left parietal, right inferior frontal and right temporal regions compared to divers without complaint and offshore workers. CONCLUSIONS: Divers with complaint of "forgetfulness or loss of concentration" have small but significant structural brain changes. PVH but not SCH have been associated with cognitive impairment. The grey matter changes were in areas involved in verbal and numeric working memory and spatial episodic memory.
Description: Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society, Inc. (http://www.uhms.org )
URI: http://archive.rubicon-foundation.org/1495
Date: 2004

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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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