Pneumothorax (collapsed lung) & diving

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Feck I had forgoten about this stuf, Your missing "spontaneous pneumothorax

During COVID I had what was clearly a COVID prompted single pneumothorax (collapsed lung). The standard medical advice is that there are three types of pneumothorax: puncture (e.g. from a bullet); disease-induced; and spontaneous. Once healed and after a rest period (~12 months) puncture pneumothorax is not a bar to diving, but spontaneous is a lifetime bar. Disease-induced, however, is a "depends on the disease" case (which I understand from the one useful doctor I've talked to is a function of whether the disease acts on existing weaknesses in the lung, or creates those weaknesses.
The question is whether it is actually correctly categorised as "Spontaneous" or "Disease-induced spontaneous" (which is not necessarily spontaneous). "Disease-induced Spontaneous" is a pre-defined list of conditions for which, in early 2020, COVID was obviously not yet on the list, so it got marked as "Spontaneous".

Alternatively I have a bet to see how many times I can get the word "spontaneous" into a single thread before anyone notices.
 

jinxy

LE
The question is whether it is actually correctly categorised as "Spontaneous" or "Disease-induced spontaneous" (which is not necessarily spontaneous). "Disease-induced Spontaneous" is a pre-defined list of conditions for which, in early 2020, COVID was obviously not yet on the list, so it got marked as "Spontaneous".

Alternatively I have a bet to see how many times I can get the word "spontaneous" into a single thread before anyone notices.
It's been along time since I dived. Three causes of fuecked lung. Spontaneous, Interstitual and lung bursting.
 
I had a pneumothorax from swine flu, and was permanently barred from military diving.

After about a decade, I asked again, and the advice I got was “you haven’t had one since, you should be good to go”. However, the consultant was clear that other consultants’ opinions may vary (but he cleared my med cat).
 

jinxy

LE
I had a pneumothorax from swine flu, and was permanently barred from military diving.

After about a decade, I asked again, and the advice I got was “you haven’t had one since, you should be good to go”. However, the consultant was clear that other consultants’ opinions may vary (but he cleared my med cat).
Docs can be a little contrairy. I had a mastoid op as a kid. One said you will fail the medical to get in the army. The other wisperd "what day is it" I answered correctly
 

The_Duke

LE
Moderator
Yep, thus the research. But unfortunately the advice to date I've had is "you've had condition B which we have no studies on, so here is the advice for condition A". Which doesn't inspire confidence either way, nor make a solid recommendation for any insurer. Clearly to an extent this is unavoidable with any new condition, just casting a net for any new information I've missed.

A private dive / respiratory medical seems like the best way forward.

On a separate note, perhaps I've just missed this insurance requirement. Thinking about it my diving in the last ten years has been in the Middle East, Africa or Asia, where I imagine they are less regulated than Europe or the US.
It isn't a requirement but a consideration.

A generic travel insurance policy will often include diving as a standard or by "tick to accept". This comes usually on the basis of "within PADI guidelines" or similar. If you do anything out of that and it goes wrong, you may have problems.

Divers doing anything outside of PADI Open Water may consider a more specialised product to get no-quibble access to hyperbaric chambers.

To give a rough indications, aeromed within Europe starts at around £10k and goes up very rapidly, long haul at £100k or more. Those figure will also be well out of date as I have not been closely involved with aeromed insurance for around a decade.

Dead is dead, but stuck in a distant hospital burning bills in the region of $2k per day - before aeromed - gets expensive fast.
 
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