Medical Forum
This not an emergency service, in case of a diving incident, please contact your local Coastguard, nearest recompression chamber or emergency services.

All questions are answered by Dr Oliver Firth, one of the doctors at the London Diving Chamber. Dr Firth has had a wide variety of experience as a doctor in both the UK and Australia. He writes regularly for ‘Sport Diver’ Magazine and gives talk on hyperbaric medicine.

Because of the confidential and sensitive nature of advice given in the medical forum, questions DO NOT post direct to the forum page but are sent to the doctor for his comment and reply. Once a reply has been sent, both the question and answer will post to the forum page.

Questions are shown in Red and the answer from Dr Firth is shown in Blue. Once an answer is posted, it is then possible for other users to post additional comments, these are shown in black.

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Last Post
Question - I just read in my course book (PADI) for the Enriched Air Nitrox Diver certificate that steroid and thyroid hormones could increase the susceptibi ...
22 July Wednesday, 4:30 PM
Question - Doctor, regarding the question on the divers medical statement Do you "have a family history of heart attack or stroke"
I'm now 45, my father had a heart attack aged 60, caused by angina and brought on by stress; he survives to this day (70 now). My grandparents all ...
22 July Wednesday, 4:20 PM
Question - Herbal Supplements
Hi there, I was just wondering if it's ok to take Echinacea while diving (although not LITERALLY at the same time!). It's just a herbal suppeme ...
18 June Thursday, 10:42 AM
Question - I have had a dayís diving in Oman first dive to 22m the second dive to 18m both for about 45mins, I had a small problem clearing my right ear, but ...
15 June Monday, 6:05 PM
Question - hi dr oliver, i have recently had an operation for the removal of a bladder stone and am currently on tamsulin tablets(once daily) i am going to d ...
10 June Wednesday, 5:20 PM
Question - Dear Dr Firth I have been living for 8 years with aseptic polyarthritis which is now well controlled with Enbrel. Last blood test was CRP 9 ESR ...
8 June Monday, 1:22 PM
Question - Hi there, our DM has just fractured his ankle and will be in plaster for 4 weeks ish, how soon after that should he consider himself fit for divin ...
8 June Monday, 1:12 PM
Question - Hi there, I am about to go on a diving holiday and am a little worried about my left ear. I recently went swimming and when i dived into t ...
3 June Wednesday, 2:14 PM
Question - Hi There, I am about to start working for a dive centre in Honduras for 12 months helping out with there photography/videography. I obviousl ...
3 June Wednesday, 2:10 PM
Question - Hello Dr Firth. I had a subtotal colectomy and ileostomy formation a year ago due to ulcerative colitis. Two months ago I had further surgery to c ...
I use mesalazine suppositries daily (each evening)
11 May Monday, 10:12 AM
Question - Hi, will I be able to continue diving if I opt for spinal facet injections as the long term treatment for lower back pain.
I've had some minor lower back and occasional hip pain for couple of years which is relieved with short sit down, earlier this year I decided to g ...
8 May Friday, 3:45 PM
Question - Hi there, I've just found out that I have a hernia....the groin type. I realize that open water dives will be a no-no (gas expansion,etc) , but wi ...
7 May Thursday, 9:36 AM
Question - After a discussion of my medical history, I was told by a diving instructor a couple of years ago, that I should never dive, but I wasnít told why ...
This is the information I exchanged with the diving instructor: I was born with glue ear, and while itís not as severe in adulthood, itís not ...
27 April Monday, 4:31 PM
Question - Hi. I have had slight noise induced hearing loss for a few years now. I have no problems equalising and no pain but will this loss cause me any pr ...
14 April Tuesday, 3:58 PM
Question - Hi. I have been diving for around 7 years with no problems what so ever. this year I have started having problems whilst descending. I get severe ...
14 April Tuesday, 3:55 PM
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The views expressed by Dr Firth & Dr Jules are their own and the publishers accept no liability for the advice and views expressed by Dr Firth , Dr Jules, or other users, which are provided as a general service to divers. Users are warned that secondary posts are the views of other users and may not be medically correct.