Posts Tagged ‘TecRec’

Ear Infections and Scuba Diving

Thursday, January 16th, 2014

Can You Prevent Otitis Externa, or Swimmers Ear?

The Answer is in the Solution

ear infections while swimming and scuba divingBy Edward Thalmann, M.D., DAN Associate Medical Director

The diving has been great all week. Now, while sitting in your room, you notice that one of your ears itches and feels wet. You look in the mirror and don’t see any problem, so you go to bed. Next morning when you wake up, you feel a fullness in your ear and a twinge of pain. What a time for an earache! You wonder if you should cancel the day’s diving.

Your problem is probably otitis externa, a fancy name for an external ear infection sometimes called swimmers ear. As the name implies, it’s usually associated with someone who swims a lot – and divers certainly fit that bill on dive-intensive scuba holidays.

The Cause
Despite what most people believe, otitis externa is not caused by bacteria in the water: instead, it’s triggered by the bacteria normally found in your external ear canal. Here’s how these normally innocuous bacteria can become troublesome.

With frequent immersion, water swells the cells lining the ear canal. Eventually, these cells pull apart – far enough for the bacteria normally found on the surface of your ear canal to get underneath the skin, where they find a nice warm environment and start to multiply.

Next thing you know, your ear canal itches, is sore and becomes inflamed. If left untreated, the swelling can spread to the nearby lymph nodes and cause enough pain that moving your jaw becomes uncomfortable. At this point, the only treatment is antibiotics, and diving is definitely out.

Some History
When I first entered the Navy in 1972, I was asked to look into the problem of ear infections in saturation divers. These divers spend up to a month in diving chambers aboard ships, where they are kept at the same depth as the job they are performing in the sea, whether it’s salvaging a sunken vessel or performing a research project.

Each day these divers are transferred from the chamber to the work site in a diving bell. The divers spend a great deal of their time immersed. Both the chamber and the bell provide a hot, humid environment, perfect for breaking down the cellular lining of the ear canal; and the result is often otitis externa.

Prevention
Otitis externa was so prevalent at the time I entered the Navy that up to 20 percent of all saturation divers were expected to get it. I searched the medical literature and found an article that had the answer: instructors at a summer camp found that dripping an acidic drying solution into the ear at the beginning and end of each day virtually eliminated swimmer’s ear in their young charges. The trick, however, was that the solution had to remain in each canal a full five minutes. If this part of the treatment was ignored, ear infections soon reappeared.

To treat the Navy divers I decided to use Otic Domeboro®* Solution: 2 percent acetic acid, water, aluminum acetate, sodium acetate and boric acid. The acid retards bacterial growth, while the aluminum and sodium acetate act as astringents, drawing excess water out of the cells lining the ear canal. We had the divers put this solution in each ear canal twice a day and hold the solutions for at least five minutes at a time, timing them from outside the chamber.

The result? Otitis externa is no longer a problem in Navy saturation divers, and the above external ear prophylaxis remains a standard part of U.S. Navy Saturation diving procedure to this day. It’s useful for sport diving, too, when there are frequent dives over several days.

Using the Solution
The only problem for sport divers is that Otic Domeboro Solution is a prescription drug, so you’ll need to get it through a doctor. (Note: Bausch & Lomb and Qualtest make similar products.) And it’s not cheap: a 2-ounce bottle costs in the neighborhood of $25. But that bottle should easily be enough for 60 or more days of use.

There are other preparations available over the counter (Auro-Dri, Swim-Ear) that are less expensive and consist of 95 percent isopropyl alcohol, with anhydrous glycerine. These preparations will certainly take care of drawing excess water out of the cells, but their lack of acidity makes them less powerful at inhibiting bacterial growth. Unfortunately, none of these over-the-counter preparations has been tested in the diving environment, so whether they will work as well as Otic Domeboro Solution is unknown.

Whatever preparation you choose to use, the trick is in the application. Before your first dive in the morning and after your last dive each night, here’s what to do:

The head is tilted to one side and the external ear canal gently filled with the solution, which must remain in the canal for five minutes. The head is then tilted to the other side, the solution allowed to run out, and the procedure repeated for the other ear. The five-minute duration must be timed with a watch. If the solution does not remain in the ear a full five minutes, the effectiveness of the procedure is greatly reduced.
– From the U.S. Navy Diving Manual

Remember, this is a prophylactic procedure that should be started before the ear becomes infected – beginning it only after an infection occurs will not help much. One word of warning: Do not put drops in your ear if you have any reason to suspect you may have a ruptured eardrum from a squeeze. If you do, you may wash bacteria into the middle ear, where an infection can be really bad news.

Clearing That Waxy Buildup
If you’re diving for an extended period of time, the cerumen in your ear may build up and cause the external ear canal to become blocked off. Once this happens, it greatly reduces the effectiveness of the external ear prophylaxis and makes an infection much more likely.

If you think your ear canal is blocked, the best way to find out is to have someone who is trained to use an otoscope use one to look in your ear. If the eardrum isn’t visible, the excess cerumen should be removed. Don’t use swabs or other instruments to remove cerumen. Gently flushing the canal with water while in the shower, with hydrogen peroxide, or by using commercial over-the-counter solutions designed to remove earwax are the best bet. If that doesn’t work, see a doctor to have the wax removed. Any intrusion into the ear canal should be done by trained medical personnel only.

For preventive measures, one way to prevent the buildup of cerumen (earwax) is to gently flush the ear canal when showering: Cup your hand next to your ear, and let your hand fill with water, which will overflow into the ear canal. Don’t let the shower stream enter your ear directly, though; it could damage your eardrum or hearing.

For more details, see More on Swimmers Ear.

(c) Jan/Feb 1999 Alert Diver

* Note: Bayer ceased manufacture of Otic Domeboro in December 2000.

Tecrec Courses Cyprus

Monday, November 4th, 2013

TecRec Courses In Cyprus

tecrec technical diver training in cyprus with easy divers cyprus

The Intro to Tech course or PADI TecRec Courses

Tec Rec courses is the perfect course for divers who have heard about technical diving and want to find out more about this exciting branch of tec diving, while staying inside of recreational diving limits. These tecrec courses walks students through the special techniques, planning procedures and skills that set technical diving apart from traditional sport diving. You will learn a deeper understanding of the techniques and procedures of tecrec diving.

PADI TecRec Courses - Technical Diving Courses Larnaca Cyprus - Zenobia Dives Course, DSAT PADI Tecrec, Tec 40, Tec 45, Tec 50, Trimix, Tec Trimix 65, Gas Blending,

During tecrec courses, It will show you how to improve their dive planning methods, buoyancy control, in-water skills and proper gear configurations, in a non-threatening and fun learning environment. The skills learned during this course will increase the student’s self-confidence and notably decrease anxiety as divers move forward through the technical diving courses. You will become a more confident diver with your buoyancy and skill level.

How To Get Your TecRec, Go Deeper! 

If you’re interested in technical diving, but you’re not familiar with the gear and equipment then the PADI Tec 40 Course is a great introduction. You will have the option to try a twinset back mounted tanks or Dive with x-Deep sidemount configuration. This first part of the PADI Tec Deep Diver courses 4 dives. The first dive can be carried out in a pool, then open water dives.

tecrec sidemount diving

What do I need to start?

  • PADI Advanced Open Water Diver or equivalent
  • PADI Enriched Air Diver or equivalent
  • PADI Deep Diver or equivalent
  • Have a minimum of 30 logged dives with at least 10 dives on nitrox (enriched air) to more than 18 metres.
  • Have a medical form signed by a physician

What will I do?

You will use desktop decompression software and dive computers to plan and execute decompression dives with a maximum 10 minutes of total decompression to up to 40m. You will use a single decompression gas with unto 50% oxygen to add conservatism to your require decompression.

What’s included in the course fee?

During the course you will use the PADI Tec Deep crew pack which is included in your course fee. These materials will introduce the technical diving equipment, the terminology, emergency procedures, decompression and stage cylinders, gas planning and executing the dives. The course materials include the PADI Tec Deep manual, a dive planning checklist and planning slate. If you wish you can purchase the optional Equipment Set-Up and Key Skills DVD which is a great tool and resource which will allow you to review skills after the course. You will use these materials through the Tec 45 and Tec 50 course as well.

What’s next?

The PADI Tec 40 course is a great starting point for your technical diving and from this point you will be able to enroll onto the PADI Tec 45 or PADI Tec 45 course.

TecRec Courses in Cyprus

 

PADI Tec 40 – Intro to Tech

Sunday, September 4th, 2011

The Intro to Tech course or The PADI Tec 40 PADI TecRec Centre - Technical Diving Courses Larnaca Cyprus - Zenobia Dives Course, DSAT PADI Tecrec, Tec 40, Tec 45, Tec 50, Trimix, Tec Trimix 65, Gas Blending, course is the perfect course for divers who have heard about technical diving and want to find out more about this exciting branch of diving, while staying inside of recreational diving limits. These tecrec courses walks students through the special techniques, planning procedures and skills that set technical diving apart from traditional sport diving.

It will show them how to improve their dive planning methods, buoyancy control, in-water skills and proper gear configurations, in a non-threatening and fun learning environment. The skills learned during this course will increase the student’s self-confidence and notably decrease anxiety as divers move forward through the technical diving courses.

dive @ezdivers.com or The PADI Tec 40 PADI TecRec Centre - Technical Diving Courses Larnaca Cyprus - Zenobia Dives Course, DSAT PADI Tecrec, Tec 40, Tec 45, Tec 50, Trimix, Tec Trimix 65, Gas Blending, course is the perfect course for divers who have heard about technical diving and want to find out more about this exciting branch of diving, while staying inside of recreational diving limits. This course walks students through the special techniques, planning procedures and skills that set technical diving apart from traditional sport diving.

It will show them how to improve their dive planning methods, buoyancy control, in-water skills and proper gear configurations, in a non-threatening and fun learning environment. The skills learned during this course will increase the student’s self-confidence and notably decrease anxiety as divers move forward through the technical diving courses.

dive @ezdivers.com or The PADI Tec 40 PADI TecRec Centre - Technical Diving Courses Larnaca Cyprus - Zenobia Dives Course, DSAT PADI Tecrec, Tec 40, Tec 45, Tec 50, Trimix, Tec Trimix 65, Gas Blending, course is the perfect course for divers who have heard about technical diving and want to find out more about this exciting branch of diving, while staying inside of recreational diving limits. This course walks students through the special techniques, planning procedures and skills that set technical diving apart from traditional sport diving.

It will show them how to improve their dive planning methods, buoyancy control, in-water skills and proper gear configurations, in a non-threatening and fun learning environment. The skills learned during this course will increase the student’s self-confidence and notably decrease anxiety as divers move forward through the technical diving courses.

dive @ezdivers.come or The PADI Tec 40 PADI TecRec Centre - Technical Diving Courses Larnaca Cyprus - Zenobia Dives Course, DSAT PADI Tecrec, Tec 40, Tec 45, Tec 50, Trimix, Tec Trimix 65, Gas Blending, course is the perfect course for divers who have heard about technical diving and want to find out more about this exciting branch of diving, while staying inside of recreational diving limits. This course walks students through the special techniques, planning procedures and skills that set technical diving apart from traditional sport diving.

It will show them how to improve their dive planning methods, buoyancy control, in-water skills and proper gear configurations, in a non-threatening and fun learning environment. The skills learned during this course will increase the student’s self-confidence and notably decrease anxiety as divers move forward through the technical diving courses.

dive @ezdivers.com

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