Diver pharmacy

All divers who care about themselves prepare for any possible inconveniences or illnesses that may occur during diving safaris. When you are prepared, you can remedy most situations right away. Otherwise it could take hours before receiving the appropriate medication or treatment.

A slight ear or paranasal sinus infection can destroy your diving experience especially when far from land or while on a diving safari. With proper preparation, ear problems can be avoided or alleviated. Always have with you ear and nose drops, cotton balls and a knitted cap to keep the ears warm.

They say every first-timer to Egypt must go through the curse of the pharaoh, aka diarrhea. There are a couple of medications in Egypt that can help prevent this occurrence. We prefer Antinal which is a miracle pill and it can be taken beforehand as a preventative treatment. The price is about EGP5 / box.

You should be careful when in the sun in Egypt whether on the beach or on diving safaris. Make sure to bring with you tanning lotion with high SPF (minimum 30) and lip balm to avoid any sun burns and cracked lips.

Because of the constant winds in the Red Sea, your inner thermometer may be off sometimes. You may not feel the weather as hot as it actually is. If you drink less water than what evaporates from your body, you can get easily dehydrated. Always keep with you some electrolytes and essential minerals.

Seasickness can be quite uncomfortable during a diving safari. But you can do something about it!

The Dramenex tablets help you avoid getting seasick effectively. It is important to take a tablet before boarding the boat and the pills should be taken regularly afterwards. The recommended dosage for adults is 1-2 tablets 2-3 times a day.

For any injuries in the sea or out, you should have on hand Betadine and Calcium tablets. Vinegar and hot water is available everywhere. But to be sure, do not touch anything under the water!

A few more things that could be handy in your medical kit: pain killers, Fenistil, plasters, bandages, scissors. There are pre-arranged first-aid kits specifically for divers such as DAN’s, for example.

The above are not on doctor’s recommendations but rather based on our 10-year diving experience. In case serious problems arise during the safari, turn to the dive guides and a doctor immediately!

Photos by Daniel Selmeczi

Diving with the Eyes of an Ear, Nose and Throat Specialist III.

Our bodies are constantly exposed to damaging effects but the safety mechanisms of our immune system prevent the development of diseases. The
weakening of our defense system or if exposed to especially serious harming effects can lead to the formation of diseases, in our case, to the
infection of the hearing canal.
The harmful effects damaging the hearing canal can be divided into two groups: every-day effects and diving-related effects.
Besides the harmful effects at our own hands from the every-day cleaning of the ear, the hearing canal is further sensitive to drafts as well as to soaps, shampoos and shower gels which can significantly change the PH-levels of the skin or cause allergic reactions.
On a diving safari divers can dive up to four times one day and adding to this some snorkelling and fooling around in the water, divers can easily
spend up to 6-7 hours a day in water. In addition, the sea water can collect in the “S”-shaped curve, increasing the time water stays in the ear. This much time spent with water in the ears is not preferable. Just think about sitting in the bath tub for a long time when our hands wrinkle like a prune.
Plus the sea water is not sterile. The organic materials in it provide sufficient breeding ground for bacteria which can more easily enter the skin of the hearing canal soaked in water, causing infections.
The first symptom of infection in the hearing canal is the ear ache. As the process continues, the skin of the hearing canal swells, narrowing or
often completely closing the canal. From the narrowed canal there is often a discharge caused by the infection.
When the ear aches and the diagnosis is probable infection in the hearing canal, we can do the following: If on a diving safari, leave out at least one day of diving, try to gently rinse out the canal with fresh water and use anti-inflammatory ear drops 3 times a day. Once on land, consult a physician who will carefully clean out the hearing canal, prescribe ear drops or if the canal is too narrow, place an antibitoic strip into the canal.
To sum up, we can do the following to avoid all these inconveniences and to prevent infection in the hearing canal:
- Keep the hands away from the ears. Do not use cleaning sticks, hair pinsor any other objects to clean them.
- Have your ears checked by a doctor 2 weeks before a diving trip.
- Use PH-neutral or hypoallergenic hygiene products.
- Protect the ears even from the wind.
- After a day of diving, always rinse the ears with fresh water and letthe water leave the ear completely.
To be continued…

Our bodies are constantly exposed to damaging effects but the safety mechanisms of our immune system prevent the development of diseases. The weakening of our defense system or if exposed to especially serious harming effects can lead to the formation of diseases, in our case, to the infection of the hearing canal.

The harmful effects damaging the hearing canal can be divided into two groups: every-day effects and diving-related effects. To READ MORE about scuba diving with the eyes of an ear, nose and throat specialist click here…

Underwater

 

Diving with the Eyes of an Ear, Nose and Throat Specialist II.

The Hearing Canal
Every diver’s nightmare is the less or more painful ear ache starting on
the second or third day of the safari which could also last for the whole
week. There are many reasons for these ear aches but most common is the
inflammation of the hearing canal. The hearing canal lies between the
outer ear and the ear drums. Its function is to get the sound waves to the
ear drums and in part, the protection of the ear drums. In an adult ear,
the surface of this “S”-shaped organ is covered with a fine layer of skin.
This skin layer contains the suet glands that produce a special substance,
the ear wax (cerumen in Latin). In normal cases, the ear wax thinly coats
the skin of the hearing canal, acting as an anti-bacterial agent and
protecting it from infections. Like with most good things, there may be a
couple of problems with ear wax: not enough or too much.
If there is not enough, the hearing canal is dry, itchy and can easily
crack, leaving room for the bacteria to reach the deeper layers of the
skin. If there is too much, it can accumulate and cause a plug, partially
or completely closing the hearing canal which may cause annoying decreased
hearing.
From all these we can quickly conclude that the use of Q-tips (ear
cleaning sticks), preferred by most people, can be the source of many
problems, so they should be used only to gently help out the ear wax that
is already on the edge of the ear canal. If we use them deeper in the ear
and we regularly clean out the ear wax, we cause the ear canal to dry out
and the skin to break. And if there is too much ear wax, we cannot clean
it all out and we simply gather it into a plug somewhere near the ear
drums.
So, it is best to leave the hearing canal alone and have it cleaned by a
doctor one or two weeks before the diving trip. The doctor will either use
a syringe filled with lukewarm water to rinse out the hearing canal or use
a gentle suction device to remove it. Of course, this will not guarantee
100% that after this procedure there is not going to be any ear infection
but the chances of it happening are decreased.
Now let us see what can actually cause an infection in the hearing canal…
To be continued…

The Hearing Canal

Every diver’s nightmare is the less or more painful ear ache starting on the second or third day of the safari which could also last for the whole week. There are many reasons for these ear aches but most common is the inflammation of the hearing canal. The hearing canal lies between the outer ear and the ear drums. Its function is to get the sound waves to the ear drums and in part, the protection of the ear drums. In an adult ear, the surface of this “S”-shaped organ is covered with a fine layer of skin.

To READ MORE about diving with the eyes of an ear, nose and throat specialist click here…

Ear

 

Diving with the Eyes of an Ear, Nose and Throat Specialist

docimageIn our new series of articles Dr. Gabor Kiefer, an ear, nose and throat specialist answers your questions that come up most frequently during diving, on holidays and diving tours. If you have any questions regarding the topics or other issues, feel free to comment.

Our childhood experiences often influence our adult goals and aspirations. I was around 10 years old when captain Cousteau series started to run on TV. I decided then that I was also going to be a diver. But the little boys love of wanting to dive remained only a platonic desire for a long time and nearly 20 years had to pass before the childhood dream could become a reality.

Since then, during the following 10 years or so, I have had the chance to live through wonderful experiences and exciting adventures on numerous diving trips and safaris.

My professional work gradually included diving and more and more divers began contacting me and entrusting me with their various ear, nose and throat problems or asked me for their fit for diving tests.

In my series of articles I would like to share with you my experiences as a diver and as a doctor to make sure that your diving tours and travels are the least disturbed by ear, nose and throat problems.

Dr. Gabor Kiefer PhD.
University Assistant Professor
SOTE, Ear, Nose and Throat Clinic
Tel: +36 20 947 0701

To be continued!

Diver Search and Locate System

New Diver Search and Locate System onboard Andromeda

Last week the SEA MARSHALL diver search and locate security system was installed onboard Andromeda and now both our vessels are equipped with this essential diver security system. It can happen to any diver that upon surfacing…to READ MORE about new scuba diver search and locate system onboard Andromeda click here…

Sea Marshall

 

Safety first onboard Cassiopeia

We have been setting up our scuba divers onboard Cassiopeia with this equipment which provides them with additional safety since 2008. This safety device saves the lives of drift-away scuba divers worldwide.

The way the device works is that the scuba diver, after reaching the water surface and noticing that he/she is dangerously far from the diving boat or liveaboard, activates the device that is attached to the diver’s tank or BCD.

To read more about scuba diver’s safety on a liveaboard click here!

Image from http://www.sarsat.noaa.gov

Image from http://www.sarsat.noaa.gov