Drowning and Near Drowning. Temple College EMS Professions. Definitions. Drowning = Death by suffocation after immersion in liquid Near drowning = Episode in which person initially survives immersion in liquid. Dry Lung 15% of cases Small amount of H 2 0 aspirated
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Drowning and Near Drowning
15% of cases
Small amount of H20 aspirated
Laryngospasm occurs, closes airway
85% of cases
Large amounts of water enter lungs
Fluid, electrolyte imbalances occur
Transport all near drownings!
Regardless of how good they look!
Inability to equalize pressure in sinuses, middle ear
Inability to equalize pressure in middle ear Perforation of tympanic membrane
“Rapture of the Deep”
Caused by breathing compressed air under pressure
Pressurized N2 is toxic to CNS
Disorientation, confusion result
Problem disappears on surfacing
Patient holds breath, surfaces suddenly
Compressed air in alveoli expands Lung tissue tears Air enters pulmonary circulation, is pumped to brain
Air embolism can occur in a swimming pool!
Sudden extremity weakness, numbness
Dilated pupil on affected side
What problem does air embolism resemble?
High concentration O2
Assist ventilations, as needed
Left side, 300 head down
Transport to recompression chamber
Diver dives deeply or too long
Does not ascend slowly enough to let dissolved nitrogen leak out of blood gradually
Nitrogen bubbles form in tissues, obstruct vessels
Pain only (joint) bends Aching, boring pain in joints
CNS bends Bubbles affect blood flow to brain or spinal cord
“Chokes” Bubbles obstruct blood flow through lungs
Decompression sickness can occur only if the dive was > 33 feet
Signs, symptoms may be delayed
High concentration oxygen
Assisted ventilations, as needed