Selected scientific publications on diving medicine and physiology.

2017 Feb 23
Environment-induced pulmonary oedema in healthy individuals
Marabotti C., Cialoni D., Pingitore A.

Infrequently, healthy individuals can develop acute pulmonary oedema when exposed to an extreme or unusual environment (ie, deep dives or high altitudes), especially during physical exertion. High-altitude pulmonary oedema (HAPO) has been reported in 0·5–7·0% of individuals who climb to altitudes higher than 4000 m (according to ascent speed), whereas swimming-induced pulmonary oedema (SIPO) has been reported in a different proportion of individuals engaged in aquatic activities.

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2017 Feb 1
Preconditioning to Reduce Decompression Stress in Scuba Divers
Germonpré P., Balestra C.

BACKGROUND: Using ultrasound imaging, vascular gas emboli (VGE) are observed after asymptomatic scuba dives and are considered a key element in the potential development of decompression sickness (DCS). Diving is also accompanied with vascular dysfunction, as measured by flow-mediated dilation (FMD). Previous studies showed significant intersubject variability to VGE for the same diving exposure and demonstrated that VGE can be reduced with even a single pre-dive intervention. Several preconditioning methods have been reported recently, seemingly acting either on VGE quantity or on endothelial inflammatory markers.

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2016 Dec 30
Pre-dive Whole-Body Vibration Better Reduces Decompression-Induced Vascular Gas Emboli than Oxygenation or a Combination of Both
Balestra C., Theunissen S., Papadopoulou V., Le Mener C., Germonpré P., Guerrero F., Lafère P.

Purpose: Since non-provocative dive profiles are no guarantor of protection against decompression sickness, novel means including pre-dive “preconditioning” interventions, are proposed for its prevention. This study investigated and compared the effect of pre-dive oxygenation, pre-dive whole body vibration or a combination of both on post-dive bubble formation.

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2016 Dec 1
Do Environmental Conditions Contribute to Narcosis Onset and Symptom Severity?
Lafère P, Balestra C, Hemelryck W, Guerrero F, Germonpré P.

Although many factors contributing to inert gas narcosis onset and severity have been put forward, the available evidence is not particularly strong. Using objective criteria, we have assessed brain impairment associated with narcosis under various environmental diving conditions...

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2016 Oct 24
Response: Commentary: Correlation between Patent Foramen Ovale, Cerebral “Lesions” and Neuropsychometric Testing in Experienced Sports Divers: Does Diving Damage the Brain?
Balestra C., Germonpré P.

Nutritional antioxidants have been proposed as an expedient strategy to counter the potentially deleterious effects of scuba diving on endothelial function, flow-mediated dilation (FMD) and heart function. Sixteen volunteers performing a single standard dive (20 min at 33 m) according to US Navy diving procedures were randomly assigned to two groups: one was administered with two doses of 200 mg of an anthocyanins (AC)-rich extract from red oranges, 12 and 4 h before diving. Anthocyanins supplementation significantly modulated the effects of diving on haematocrit, body water distribution and FMD.

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