Decompression Sickness

Decompression sickness (DCS) is an unwanted outcome of diving. Measures to mitigate the risk of DCS have to be a part of every dive. This booklet provides updated concepts of causes and mechanisms, typical manifestations, standard management and prevention of DCS.

In this book, you’ll learn about:

Chapter 1 – Introduction to Decompression Sickness
The Physiological Mechanisms of DCS
Predicting Gas Uptake and Elimination

Chapter 2 – Effective Use of Your Dive Computer
Important Cautions
Basic Guidelines
Specific Tips and Tricks

Chapter 3 – Diagnosing Decompression Sickness
Signs and Symptoms of DCS
Differential Diagnosis of DCS

Chapter 4 – Treating Decompression Sickness
On-the-Scene First Aid
Subsequent Evaluation
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy
In-Water Recompression
Emergency Resources

Chapter 5 – Factors Contributing to Decompression Sickness
Thermal Stress
Optimal Practices
Postdive Air Travel
Medical and Physical Fitness
State of Hydration
Breathing Gas Mixture
Carbon Dioxide Level
Patent Foramen Ovale
Additional Factors

Chapter 6 – Summary and Closing Thoughts



Managing Editor: Petar Denoble, MD, DSc
Author: Neal Pollock, PhD