*Diving Medicine

Volume 1 -

Common Diving Related Ear Barotrauma And Its Management


Barotrauma of ears is by far the most common disorder among divers. Medically or Physically Risk factors to barotrauma of ears :


External Ear Canal Obstruction

Most common Significant plug of ear wax
Common Swelling of the external ear canal secondary to infection,
Rare Bony exostoses,
Rare Congenital or acquired stenosis or atresia
Rare Ear plugs




Eustachian Tube Obstruction

Temporary Acute upper respiratory infection ( Flu )
Intermittent Allergic rhinitis
Permanent Cleft palate or orafacial malformations


Detail physical examination by experience diving physician can prevent and treat majority of these risk factors for ear obstruction. Rare problems may need Otorhinolaryngologist management.

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Middle Ear Barotrauma of Descent Grading

Grade
0
Symptoms without signs *
Grade
I
Injection of the tympanic membrane and along the handle of Malleus ~ Teed
I
Grade
II
Injection plus slight hemorrhage within the substance of the tympanic membrane ~ Teed
II
Grade
III
Gross Hemorrhage within the substance of tympanic membrane ~ Teed
III
Grade
IV
Free blood in the middle ear , bluish drum and bulging ~ Teed
IV
Grade
V
Perforation of the tympanic membrane

Teed grading is use by US Navy Divers



Information provided by Scuba Network's Diving Medical Consultant, Dr. Ronson LI



E-mail to Dr Ronson LI *

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