Selected scientific publications on diving medicine and physiology.

2018 Jan 1
Design and Implementation of an Underwater Telemetric Glucose Monitoring System for Scuba Divers
Egi S. M., Altepe C., Pieri M., Ruzgar Sinoplu D., Cialoni D., Özyiğit T., Pierleoni P., Marroni A.

Despite the abundance of telemetric applications for ecology, behavior and physiology of marine life, few efforts were reported about the use of acoustic telemetry for SCUBA divers. Such systems are required to study the medical conditions of some type of divers such as diabetic ones. This study communicates the details of a study to design, manufacture and test a prototype system that measures the blood glucose while diving and transmit the results in real time to the surface. The system design consists of a subcutaneous sensor to measure interstitial glycaemia, a microcontroller based RF receiver board in a custom built waterproof casing, a pair of acoustic modems to transmit data underwater and a computer on the surface to log the received data.

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2017 Jun 9
Design and Validation of a Breathing Detection System for Scuba Divers
Altepe C., Egi S.M., Ozyigit T., Ruzgar Sinoplu D., Marroni A. and Pierleoni P.

Drowning is the major cause of death in self-contained underwater breathing apparatus (SCUBA) diving. This study proposes an embedded system with a live and light-weight algorithm which detects the breathing of divers through the analysis of the intermediate pressure (IP) signal of the SCUBA regulator. A system composed mainly of two pressure sensors and a low-power microcontroller was designed and programmed to record the pressure sensors signals and provide alarms in absence of breathing. An algorithm was developed to analyze the signals and identify inhalation events of the diver. A waterproof case was built to accommodate the system and was tested up to a depth of 25 m in a pressure chamber.

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2018 Nov 20
Designing a Diving Protocol for Thermocline Identification Using Dive Computers in Marine Citizen Science
Egi S. M., Cousteau P., Pieri M., Cerrano C., Özyigit T., and Marroni A.

Dive computers have an important potential for citizen science projects where recreational SCUBA divers can upload the depth temperature profile and the geolocation of the dive to a central database which may provide useful information about the subsurface temperature of the oceans. However, their accuracy may not be adequate and needs to be evaluated. The aim of this study is to assess the accuracy and precision of dive computers and provide guidelines in order to enable their contribution to citizen science projects. Twenty-two dive computers were evaluated during real ocean dives for consistency and scatter in the first phase.

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2016 Aug 1
Detection of venous gas emboli after repetitive breath hold dives “Case report”
Cialoni D., Pieri M., Giunchi G., Sponsiello N., Lanzone A.M., Torcello L., Boaretto G. and Marroni A.

Introduction: Neurological symptoms after breathhold (BH) diving are often referred to as "Taravana" and considered a form of decompression sickness. However, the presence of "high" gas embolism after BH diving has never been clearly shown. This study showed high bubble formation after BH diving. Materials and methods: We performed transthoracic echocardiography on a 53-year-old male spearfishing diver (180 cm; 80 kg; BMI 24.7) 15 minutes before diving and at 15-minute intervals for 90 minutes after diving in a 42-meter-deep pool. Number of dives, bottom time and surface intervals were freely determined by the diver. Dive profiles were digitally recorded for depth, time and surface interval, using a freediving computer. Relative surface interval (surface interval/diving time) and gradient factor were calculated.

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2017 Sep 19
Dive Risk Factors, gas bubble formation, and decompression illness in recreational SCUBA diving: Analysis of DAN Europe DSL Data Base
Cialoni D, Pieri M, Balestra C & Marroni A.

Introduction: The popularity of SCUBA diving is steadily increasing together with the number of dives and correlated diseases per year. The rules that govern correct decompression procedures are considered well known even if the majority of Decompression Sickness (DCS) cases are considered unexpected confirming a bias in the "mathematical ability" to predict DCS by the current algorithms. Furthermore, little is still known about diving risk factors and any individual predisposition to DCS. This study provides an in-depth epidemiological analysis of the diving community, to include additional risk factors correlated with the development of circulating bubbles and DCS.

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