DAN Medical Frequently Asked Questions

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Ocular Decompression Sickness

Is it possible to get ocular (eye) decompression sickness?

Ocular decompression sickness is a relatively uncommon event, but one which does occur and it is very important that divers be aware of this possible presentation of DCS. Symptoms may include:

  • Loss of vision
  • Blurred vision
  • Diplopia (double vision)
    li>Blind spots in your field of vision
  • Pain around the eye
  • Nystagmus (abnormal eye movements)

The presence of any of these symptoms following a dive should be evaluated as soon as possible by a physician knowledgeable about diving injuries, or the diver should call DAN.

For more information on vision issues, see the complete article by Frank K. Butler Jr., Captain, Medical Corps, United States Navy on High-Pressure Ophthalmology from Alert Diver.