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A twelve-year longitudinal study of neuropsychological function in non-saturation professional divers

Vit. artikkel

Publisert

  • 2014

Forskningsområde

Temaovergripende

Objectives: Our main aim was to study the long-term neuropsychological effects of non-saturation diving. Further, we aimed to investigate whether neuropsychological performance was predictive of subsequent diving accidents and diving status. Methods: In this prospective longitudinal study, we enrolled 50 male diving students (mean age 25.3 years) at a diving school and followed them up six and 12 years later (43 and 37 divers, respectively). At each wave of the study, divers completed a comprehensive neuropsychological test battery and answered questionnaires on cumulative number of dives, incidents of decompression illness (DCI) and professional diver status. Results: At the 12-year follow-up, the divers reported a median number of 455 (range 40–5,604) cumulative dives. Cumulative number of dives was not associated with any adverse neuropsychological effects. However, divers with an incident of DCI performed worse in a memory test (Benton Visual Retention Test) and reported slightly more neuropsychiatric symptoms (Q 16). Diver students who performed well on a blindfolded memory test (tactual performance test) had an increased likelihood of becoming a professional diver 12 years later. Conclusions: The main findings in the present study support the view that asymptomatic non-saturation divers who have dived under controlled conditions do not have an increased...

International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health 88: 669–682
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