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Question
Posted : January 17, 2012
Numb fingertips 3 days after shallow cold dive
I was diving in cold water (@8 degrees) for 40 mins at very shallow depths (max 6.1 m) on sat. This is the lowest temp I have ever been diving at and my hands got very cold. 3 days on and my index and middle fingertips on my right hand still feel numb/bruised. Others are slightly affected but these are the worst. I do have RSI type symptoms on this side -though usually affecting more the ulna nerve (from rotator cuff to wrist). Have had this loooked at before (xray for 3rd rib) but nothing found Am wondering if this could be the cause and whether I should get it checked out properly. Many thanks
Answer
Posted : January 17, 2012
Thanks for the query.

There are numerous causes of numbness and diagnosis is often difficult. Low temperatures can certainly impair the function of nerves temporarily, but they usually recover reasonably quickly, certainly within 3 days. RSI is another possible cause, but if your symptoms came on straight after diving, then it would be wise to see a diving doctor to be examined as soon as possible.

Regards, Dr O
Answer provided by Dr Oliver Firth
Dr Ollie Firth
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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.
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