How to manage Oxygen Deficiency (Hypoxia)
The failure to supply adequate oxygen to tissues leads to Hypoxia or Oxygen deficiency.
Presentation of Hypoxia
Treatment under water
- The brain is affected first! With severe hypoxia, sudden unconsciousness occurs, e.g. ascent after breath hold diving. With lesser hypoxia, confusion, headache, fatigue, apathy, overconfidence, blurred vision, slurred speech, vertigo, stupor, etc. may occur.
- The diver becomes blue.
Treatment under water
- Stop swimming and relax (less oxygen use).
- Signal to the buddy that something is wrong (unconsciousness may occur at any moment).
- Begin the ascent.
- At the surface, hyperventilate atmospheric air.
- If a diver sees an unconscious buddy, perform a deep diver rescue.
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