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June 1987

Scuba Diving and Diabetes-Reply

Author Affiliations

Department of Preventive Medicine Navy Environmental Health Center Norfolk, VA 23508

Am J Dis Child. 1987;141(6):605-606. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1987.04460060023019

In Reply.—The points raised by Brouhard et al regarding our recommendation not allowing a person with IDDM to dive are well taken. We fully agree that the patient with IDDM should be allowed to lead as normal a life-stylele, including most sports. However, we believe that it is not prudent to allow these patients to participate in scuba diving, for the following reasons:

  1. In contrast to land-based the undersea environment is unpredictable and unforgiving, with sudden changes in temperature, current, and surface conditions; there is also the potential to encounter marine animals and for equipment to fail. Diving partners should be equally healthy, physically fit and responsible; each should have the physical and mental stamina required to cope with dangerous situations. A diver should not be present to "watch out" for a partner who has a disease or disorder that can be exacerbated underwater.

  2. Adiver cannot predict that any dive will be without problems. The above characteristics

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