• MEDICAL EMERGENCY OR DIVE RELATED CONCERN? Call 9-1-1 or Divers Alert Network International Emergency Hotline (919-684-9111).

Who We Treat

We provide emergency medical treatment for decompression sickness (DCS), decompression illness (DCI), arterial gas embolism (AGE) and Carbon Monoxide (CO) poisoning.
CO Poisoning
*Statistics since 1992


DCS, also known as the ‘bends’, is the most common diving related injury needing hyperbaric treatment. It is caused by staying at depth too long and/or ascending too quickly, without allowing for adequate release of accumulated nitrogen. Symptoms can range from a persistent headache or fatigue to paralysis or death (in severe cases). The sooner the diver is evaluated and treatment is started, the greater the possibility a full resolution of symptoms may occur.



DCI is a term describing the combination of two dive related illnesses, decompression sickness (DCS) and arterial gas embolism (AGE). can randomly ,The main risk factors are contributed by a reduction in ambient pressure, deep / long dives, cold water, hard exercise at depth, and rapid ascents. Other factors thought to increase the risk of DCI, though evidence is not conclusive, are obesity, dehydration, hard exercise immediately after surfacing, and pulmonary disease. Since DCI is a random event, almost any dive profile can result in DCI, no matter how safe it seems. With prompt evaluation and treatment, full resolution of symptoms can be achieved.



AGE is immediate and life threatening and occurs when gas bubbles are released into arterial circulation. AGE can occur when a diver surfaces rapidly without exhaling, like in a panic situation, and even when the ascent appears completely normal. Pulmonary diseases, like obstructive lung disease may also increase the risk of AGE. The releases of gas bubbles directly into the arterial circulation can reach heart and brain tissues, blocking circulation in small vessels. Divers suffering from AGE may lose consciousness within 10 minutes of surfacing, this diver needs immediate recompression. AGE can also present in less remarkable symptoms such as neurological dysfunction, such as the sensation of tingling or numbness, a sensation of weakness without obvious paralysis, or complaints of difficulty in thinking without obvious confusion. Medical attention is also needed in these cases.


Carbon monoxide is a toxic gas, but, being colorless, odorless, tasteless, and initially non-irritating, it is difficult for people to detect. Carbon monoxide is a product of incomplete combustion of organic matter. It is often produced by motor vehicles that run on gasoline, diesel, methane, or other carbon-based fuels and from tools, gas heaters, and cooking equipment that are powered by carbon-based fuels such as propane, butane and charcoal. Carbon monoxide poisoning is the most common type of fatal poisoning in many countries.