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Thread: Patent Foramen Ovale

  1. #1
    PFO free :) pchanning is just really nice pchanning is just really nice pchanning is just really nice pchanning is just really nice pchanning is just really nice pchanning is just really nice pchanning is just really nice pchanning is just really nice pchanning is just really nice pchanning is just really nice pchanning's Avatar
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    Patent Foramen Ovale

    I have just found out that I am one of the 30% of the population that have a PFO. I sufferred 'significant neurological DCS' some 3 months ago (in short, properly f****d up) and the wondering/ lack of a decent explanation has been unsettling. Strange, I am actually quite relieved.

    What I really want to say is this: after decompression dives not only should one refrain from straining with equipment and generally take it easy, one should also not sneeze, cough or even strain on the loo - all these things increase thorassic pressure and can manifest a neuro bend if one has a PFO (which makes perfect sense, but eluded me until too late). Seriously, I suffered mine due to coughing, albeit violently, and it manifest in about 3 minutes - then I hit the floor!

    I was surprised that the PFO did not reveal itself some time ago, but surprisingly this is not uncommon.

    Incidentally, I am due to be assessed at DDRC (Diving Deseases Research Centre) next week, which should be interesting (a friend of mine has recently been given a 10m depth limit due to the presence of a PFO). So it seems I am going to look rather overdressed in 10m of water - with all the snorkellers. :D

    WORTHY PLUG: I found the new Edition of Deeper into Diving (John Lippmann and Dr. Simon Mitchell - whom we are very lucky to have on this board) to be a very useful and also comforting resource. Thanks to you both for all the hard work. Go an buy a copy if you don't have one already, it is simply excellent with a wealth of up to date information - the likes of which are better to learn, rather than glean from experience.

    Take it easy - and no running, lifting, farting, sneezing or coughing. :)

    Cheers
    Paul Channing
    Last edited by pchanning; 21st September 2006 at 16:41. Reason: clarity

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    Pom in Aus louisrankin will become famous soon enough louisrankin will become famous soon enough louisrankin will become famous soon enough louisrankin's Avatar
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    Wink Re: Patent Foramen Ovale

    At least you now know what caused the bend, my friend carried on diving with his PFO until he had the operation. He used to have skin bends after nearly every dive. You might be able to jump the NHS waiting list if you pay privately to see a consultant for the first consult he will then add you to his NHS list. Ask the Diving Doc I am sure he/she will be able to recommend a consultant. Anyway good luck and fingers crossed it may be 30m depth limit and not 10m (English sense of humour)

    Louis

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    Re: Patent Foramen Ovale

    Dear Paul,

    Good luck with your assesment! I think all of us that are involved in this type of "crazy maniac diving" have wondered at one point or another if we shouldn't get checked out for PFO. On one level, I think to myself, is this something that I should look into as a preventive matter, and on the other hand I have a little voice in the back of my head which says: "Don't ask because you may not like the answer!"

    I think about this quite often. How would I respond if I was told that I was no longer fit to do a certain type of diving? For those of us who are gung-ho about this stuff, and it has become a very meaningful part of our lives, this can potentially become a huge internal conflict.

    I hope you have a positive result from your assesment and good luck with your future dives.

    Regards,
    Randy

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    Re: Patent Foramen Ovale

    I had my heart checked after my Bend, and found a perfect heart with no PFO or anything else wrong. That makes me happy, but I don't think I would have had the check if I hadn't gotton Bent.

  5. #5
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    Re: Patent Foramen Ovale

    Go an buy a copy if you don't have one already
    Bollocks - I'm going to borrow yours you tight git. You still owe me for the boat you got bent on - how's that for a memory? Brain lesions? PAH! :)

    Glad you found out the cause. Nothing worse than not knowing why. So, can you go deeper if you don't cough? I'll get you some Benylin...

    I got bent sideways, backwards and upside down and they didn't even suggest PFO checking. I guess I must be unbendable as long as my suit doesn't flood... :D

    By the way, how's the swelling? [Innocent /on ]

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    Re: Patent Foramen Ovale

    yo

    .... friend of mine got twisted up some years ago, PFO they said and diagnozed, he did the mushroom umbrella thing inside the ticker, is diving ever sincve ... and deep as well ....

    .. thought about what you wanna do about it ?.

    Matt
    N 20' 37.617'
    W 87' 04.693'

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    Re: Patent Foramen Ovale

    Hi Paul,

    Glad to hear you've had the test now, I guess in someways it's reassuring to know what the cause of your bend was and guess that you are now going to get it fixed.

    Hope the "swelling" has subsided and look foward to seeing you as a very overdressed snorkler in the meantime (come dive pendennis point it's only 8m max plus remains of submarines!)

    You aiming for one of those "I'm unbendable letters"?

    ps you around the weekend of 30th Sept /1st October?

  8. #8
    RBW Member quinnw is an unknown quantity at this point quinnw's Avatar
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    Re: Patent Foramen Ovale

    PFOs a subject close to my heart J

    Last year I decided to go RB and Trimix. Seen several nasty bend incidents, albeit second hand (people in my club), which were attributed to PFOs. Thought about it, and got tested. Yep I had a PFO. Closed in February. Back diving no depth limit.

    The interesting thing is the restriction when you are diagnosed with a PFO. Never heard 10 meters. There were 3 of us with PFOs. One no restriction but advised not to go deep (no definition as to deep), one to 15 meters and one to 35 meters but first dive of the day only and on very very conservative tables.

    Might want to ask DDRC how big they think the PFO is. Bubble test will give you a good indication. Mine was about 12 bubbles. Took a 25mm bung on one side and a 15mm bung on the other.

    If you want more information, let me know. I can recommend a very good surgeon in Bristol…

  9. #9
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    Re: Patent Foramen Ovale

    Does anyone have a link to a video of the procedure. I understand the concept. However, I would like to know more about the specifics.

    Also, what is the time after the procedure until the diver can return to diving?

  10. #10
    RBW Member quinnw is an unknown quantity at this point quinnw's Avatar
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    Re: Patent Foramen Ovale

    Typically 3 months, but only after another bubble test proves the operation was successful. I know one poor diver who had to have his PFO closed 3 times before they got it right…

    On that note, apparently a lot of places don’t measure the whole before they proceed. The advise I have learnt is to get it measured, increases your chances of a successful operation.

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