Selected scientific publications on diving medicine and physiology.

2020 Sep 30
Endothelial function may be enhanced in the cutaneous microcirculation after a single air dive
François Guerrero, Kate Lambrechts, Qiong Wang, Aleksandra Mazur, Michael Théron, Alessandro Marroni

ntroduction: The effects of scuba diving on the vessel wall have been studied mainly at the level of large conduit arteries. Data regarding the microcirculation are scarce and indicate that these two vascular beds are affected differently by diving. Methods: We assessed the changes in cutaneous microcirculation before an air scuba dive, then 30 min and 24 h after surfacing. Endothelium-dependent and independent vasomotion were successively elicited by iontophoretic administration of acetylcholine and sodium nitroprusside respectively, and cutaneous blood flux was monitored by laser Doppler flowmetry.

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2018 Aug 1
European position paper on the management of patients with patent foramen ovale. General approach and left circulation thromboembolism
Pristipino C, Sievert H, D'Ascenzo F, Mas JL, Meier B, Scacciatella P, Hildick-Smith D, Gaita F, Toni D, Kyrle P, Thomson J, Derumeaux G, Onorato E, Sibbing D, Germonpre P, Berti S, Chessa M, Bedogni F, Dudek D, Hornung M, Zamorano J, European Association of Percutaneous Cardiovascular I, European Stroke O, European Heart Rhythm A, European Association for Cardiovascular I, Association for European P, Congenital C, GUCH ESCWgo, Thrombosis ESCWgo & European Haematological S.

The presence of a patent foramen ovale (PFO) is implicated in the pathogenesis of a number of medical conditions; however, the subject remains controversial and no official statements have been published. This interdisciplinary paper, prepared with involvement of eight European scientific societies, aims to review the available trial evidence and to define the principles needed to guide decision making in patients with PFO. In order to guarantee a strict process, position statements were developed with the use of a modified grading of recommendations assessment, development, and evaluation (GRADE) methodology. A critical qualitative and quantitative evaluation of diagnostic and therapeutic procedures was performed, including assessment of the risk/benefit ratio.

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2019 Nov 8
Evaluation of Divers’ Neuropsychometric Effectiveness and High-Pressure Neurological Syndrome via Computerized Test Battery Package and Questionnaires in Operational Setting
Berenji Ardestani Simin, Balestra Costantino, Bouzinova Elena V., Loennechen Øyvind, Pedersen Michael

Introduction: When divers are compressed to water depths deeper than 150 meter sea water (msw), symptoms of high-pressure neurological syndrome (HPNS) might appear due to rapid increase in pressure on the central nervous system during compression. The aim of this study was to first operate a new computerized tool, designed to monitor divers’ wellbeing and cognitive function, and to record the results. The second aim was to evaluate the feasibility and validity of the Physiopad software and HPNS questionnaires as a new tool for monitoring divers wellbeing in an operational setting, including sensible visualization and presentation of results. Methods: The Physiopad was operated onboard Deep Arctic (TechnipFMC Diving Support Vessel). The diving work was performed between 180 and 207 msw. The data from 46 divers were collected from the HPNS questionnaires, Hand dynamometry test, Critical Flicker Fusion Frequency test (CFFF), Adaptive Visual Analog Scale (AVAS), Simple Math Process (MathProc test), Perceptual Vigilance Task (PVT), and Time Estimation Task (time-wall).

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2020 Jun 1
Evaluation of Protection Level, Respiratory Safety, and Practical Aspects of Commercially Available Snorkel Masks as Personal Protection Devices Against Aerosolized Contaminants and SARS-CoV2
Germonpre, P., D. Van Rompaey, and C. Balestra

Introduction: The “Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2″ (SARS-CoV2) pandemic has led to a worldwide shortage of personal protection devices (PPD) for medical and paramedical personnel. Adaptation of commercially available snorkel masks to serve as full face masks has been proposed. Even not formally approved as PPD, they are publicized on social media as suitable for this use. Concerns about actual protection levels and risk of carbon dioxide (CO2) accumulation while wearing them for extended periods made us perform a systematic testing of various brands, in order to verify whether they are as safe and effective as claimed.

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2017 Dec 1
Evidence of Heritable Determinants of Decompression Sickness in Rats
Lautridou J., Buzzacott P., Belhomme M., Dugrenot E., Lafère P., Balestra C., Guerrero F.

INTRODUCTION: Decompression sickness (DCS) is a complex and poorly understood systemic disease caused by inadequate desaturation after a decrease of ambient pressure. Strong variability between individuals is observed for DCS occurrence. This raises questions concerning factors that may be involved in the interindividual variability of DCS occurrence. This study aimed to experimentally assess the existence of heritable factors involved in DCS occurrence by selectively breeding individuals resistant to DCS from a population stock of Wistar rats.

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