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Seniordiver
11-26-2008, 16:08
I fell and fractured a rib two weeks ago, and am scheduled to be in Roatan on 6 Dec for a diving trip. I have been advised against diving, but DAMN! I only get a chance 1 or 2 times a year. So, any other opinions, ideas, ways around the problem.

Thanks

teerlkay
11-26-2008, 16:49
Sorry to hear about you busting a rib. Bad timing.

If you ask around long enough on the internet, someone will tell you what you want to hear - that it's ok to go down to Roatan and dive.

However, whoever tells you this, in all probability, doesn't know you, doesn't know your general health, doesn't know how quick you recover, etc.

If you want to go to Roatan and dive, I suggest you make another appointment with the medical professional that advised against it.

Best of luck

obrules15
11-26-2008, 17:15
I fell and fractured a rib two weeks ago, and am scheduled to be in Roatan on 6 Dec for a diving trip. I have been advised against diving, but DAMN! I only get a chance 1 or 2 times a year. So, any other opinions, ideas, ways around the problem.

Thanks

I actually would talk to DAN about it and if they say it is OK I would take the literature they can provide to your PCP who gave that advice. Medical Professionals (of which I am one) tend to err on the side of caution for obvious reasons and if they are not fully informed they will say no. DAN should give you more accurate info.

crosseyed95
11-26-2008, 17:47
I fell and fractured a rib two weeks ago, and am scheduled to be in Roatan on 6 Dec for a diving trip. I have been advised against diving, but DAMN! I only get a chance 1 or 2 times a year. So, any other opinions, ideas, ways around the problem.

Thanks

I actually would talk to DAN about it and if they say it is OK I would take the literature they can provide to your PCP who gave that advice. Medical Professionals (of which I am one) tend to err on the side of caution for obvious reasons and if they are not fully informed they will say no. DAN should give you more accurate info.

obrules15 is giving some good advice. Call DAN, that's what they are there for..

James1010
11-26-2008, 17:49
Well I think diving wouldn't be that big of an issue if you are in a controlable pain situation.

ScubaDude
11-26-2008, 20:46
I fell and fractured a rib two weeks ago, and am scheduled to be in Roatan on 6 Dec for a diving trip. I have been advised against diving, but DAMN! I only get a chance 1 or 2 times a year. So, any other opinions, ideas, ways around the problem.

Thanks

I'd go for it, you've got plenty of logged dives and I'm sure that once you're in the water you will make a sensible decision based on how you feel. There's no shame in aborting a dive, I've done it a couple of times myself. And besides, it's ROATAN!

GO FOR IT!

Lulubelle
11-26-2008, 23:20
I'd go for it, you've got plenty of logged dives and I'm sure that once you're in the water you will make a sensible decision based on how you feel. There's no shame in aborting a dive, I've done it a couple of times myself. And besides, it's ROATAN!

GO FOR IT!

Not enough info about your injury to say whether it is safe or not. DAN will probably have to give you a conservative answer as they won't have any specific information either. Chat with your doctor please, he/she should not mind giving you their "why" for their advice. If the only concern is pain, then that is certainly yours to manage according to your tolerance. If, however, based on the particulars of the fracture, your doctor is concerned about your lungs ability to inflate properly, a laceration of your liver or spleen, etc. then you would be well advised to stay put. Hope it is a go for your trip.

teerlkay
11-27-2008, 15:44
I fell and fractured a rib two weeks ago, and am scheduled to be in Roatan on 6 Dec for a diving trip. I have been advised against diving, but DAMN! I only get a chance 1 or 2 times a year. So, any other opinions, ideas, ways around the problem.

Thanks

I'd go for it, you've got plenty of logged dives and I'm sure that once you're in the water you will make a sensible decision based on how you feel. There's no shame in aborting a dive, I've done it a couple of times myself. And besides, it's ROATAN!

GO FOR IT!
-------------------
My point exactly - not knowing your current fitness level, your age, which rib is fractured, any complications, etc, you are getting "go for it" advice.

As I said the timing sucks! But no one should give you the green light with out a medical exam.

Can you currently get in your wetsuit without problems? Can you don your gear?

mrm777
11-27-2008, 17:24
"Can you currently get in your wetsuit without problems? Can you don your gear?"
______________________________________

Can you help your buddy if he needs it?

sea princess
11-27-2008, 19:39
So sorry to hear about your rib! I broke three a year and a half ago in a rhino accident and it took forever to heal. I couldn't imagine trying to dive with my bcd squeezing me or the pressure as you go deeper. I agree with everyone else call DAN and listen to your doctors after seeking the info. It isn't worth getting hurt worse! The whole thing just sucks!

elijahb
11-27-2008, 22:54
If you can get into your wetsuit without pain than I think you should be good to go.
Since it is only fractured than I don't think you have to worry about puncturing anything.
Do you dive a jacket style bcd or a back inflate or a bp & w? I think a jacket would put the most pressure on you fracture.

shawnwill36
11-28-2008, 11:25
if your questioning the docs decision then you may not be as bad as the doc thinks, when in doubt? dive

Brandon Belew
11-28-2008, 11:39
Is there no risk of bubbles forming in the fracture when diving?

What about the pressure of the water pushing in on the fracture, possibly making it worse or making it heal incorrectly?

obrules15
11-28-2008, 11:49
If you can get into your wetsuit without pain than I think you should be good to go.
Since it is only fractured than I don't think you have to worry about puncturing anything.
Do you dive a jacket style bcd or a back inflate or a bp & w? I think a jacket would put the most pressure on you fracture.

Ummm, "fractured" and "broken" are the same thing.

Seniordiver
11-28-2008, 12:29
Folks, Thanks. This why this forum is so great. I am sorry for whining (i ususally operate in a no whine zone).

My plan is to ask my Dr some of the great questions you posed as to the actual risks. I have just bought an elestic plastic bandage, and will ask if that will prevent any further injury. More info when I get it.

Thanks again

Jack Hammer
11-28-2008, 23:00
If you can get into your wetsuit without pain than I think you should be good to go.
Since it is only fractured than I don't think you have to worry about puncturing anything.
Do you dive a jacket style bcd or a back inflate or a bp & w? I think a jacket would put the most pressure on you fracture.

Ummm, "fractured" and "broken" are the same thing.
That's like starting the jacket bc or bp/w debate.

Jack

elijahb
11-29-2008, 01:12
If you can get into your wetsuit without pain than I think you should be good to go.
Since it is only fractured than I don't think you have to worry about puncturing anything.
Do you dive a jacket style bcd or a back inflate or a bp & w? I think a jacket would put the most pressure on you fracture.

Ummm, "fractured" and "broken" are the same thing.
That's like starting the jacket bc or bp/w debate.

Jack
He is right "A fracture can be complete or partial" my bad

dannybot
11-29-2008, 08:07
My concern would be trying to breathe underwater, since you have to generate negative pressure, and you will have the pressure of the water, as well as a wetsuit and BCD pushing against your ribs. I immagine that it will be quite painful, maybe try going to a pool and doing a test dive if you can. Good luck.

sea princess
12-10-2008, 20:23
So I am thinking you made the trip. Let us know how it went.

Seniordiver
12-15-2008, 10:44
So I am thinking you made the trip. Let us know how it went.

I did make the trip-report to follow. On advice of DAN, I did my first few dives with a very conservative decent rate while "listening to my body"-(not that part it just gets me in trouble) but the rib.

It went well, I could feel the pressure but no additional pain. In the end, I feel as though I've had another week of healing. I have a back inflate BC Zeagle ranger so that there was no additional squeeze.

Thanks to all for the advice and the interest. What a great site!:smiley20:

huvrr
12-15-2008, 17:27
So sorry to hear about your rib! I broke three a year and a half ago in a rhino accident and it took forever to heal. I couldn't imagine trying to dive with my bcd squeezing me or the pressure as you go deeper. I agree with everyone else call DAN and listen to your doctors after seeking the info. It isn't worth getting hurt worse! The whole thing just sucks!
Wow, a rhinoceros accident. That sounds scary. You are lucky to be alive.

tndiverdude
12-16-2008, 20:47
Having had a few rib injuries, I dont recommend diving. Snorkeling woudl be good as woudl abit of shallow breath hold, but small clots can develope and lung function is greatly reduced.
So I woudl nto dive, but I would do some snorkeling.

jimmy

sea princess
12-16-2008, 21:24
So sorry to hear about your rib! I broke three a year and a half ago in a rhino accident and it took forever to heal. I couldn't imagine trying to dive with my bcd squeezing me or the pressure as you go deeper. I agree with everyone else call DAN and listen to your doctors after seeking the info. It isn't worth getting hurt worse! The whole thing just sucks!
Wow, a rhinoceros accident. That sounds scary. You are lucky to be alive.

LOL very funny. Actually we are lucky to be alive even if it wasn't a charging rhino! We flipped 3 full backward flips down a very steep incline and landed on the side and everyone walked away with minor injuries. I just got the worst of it with my ribs.

sea princess
12-16-2008, 21:25
So I am thinking you made the trip. Let us know how it went.

I did make the trip-report to follow. On advice of DAN, I did my first few dives with a very conservative decent rate while "listening to my body"-(not that part it just gets me in trouble) but the rib.

It went well, I could feel the pressure but no additional pain. In the end, I feel as though I've had another week of healing. I have a back inflate BC Zeagle ranger so that there was no additional squeeze.

Thanks to all for the advice and the interest. What a great site!:smiley20:

Glad to see it went well and you didn't miss out on the trip.

bane51031
12-31-2008, 19:07
Good deal, found this late but, glad you were able to go...

LCF
01-04-2009, 20:30
Glad you were able to go.

For the education of future readers of this thread:

Rib fractures are common, especially in older people, as the ribs become more brittle. The fractures themselves are not particularly dangerous, as the ribs will heal and precise orientation of the pieces is not important. The big issues with rib fractures are these:

1. Injury to the underlying soft structures in the chest, particularly the lungs. Completely displaced rib fractures can puncture the lung, resulting in pneumothorax (air between the lung and chest wall) and this can be a lethal problem underwater. I would certainly advise someone with a completely displaced rib fracture not to dive until enough new bone had formed to make the fracture stable. Of course, a nondisplaced rib fracture can BECOME displaced with any additional trauma, so diving off a boat, for example, where one might fall again, would be a higher risk activity.

2. Rib fractures are painful, and affect one's ability to take a deep breath. Shallow breathing underwater is a setup for CO2 retention, and the anxiety, increased narcosis, and other problems that come with this. Unless your pain is well enough controlled on simple pain medications (Tylenol or OTC NSAIDs) that you can easily breathe AND move your gear around, diving with a rib fracture is probably inadvisable.

If you have a stable fracture (crack, or injury that resulted in painful ribs but no obvious break on x-ray) and have good pain control, then the only contraindication to diving is the risk of fracture displacement with further trauma.

As an ER doc who is currently diving with a rib fracture, I do know whereof I speak . . . :)

Splitlip
01-04-2009, 21:03
I am late also.

I have fractured ribs on 2 occasions. Once in my 20's and once in my 40's. Both times I was back in the water. If I could don my wetsuit and harness/BC/cylinder I knew I could dive.
Getting back on a dive platform without a ladder was a different matter.

I suspect most PCP's in this day and age will err on the side of caution.

Lulubelle
01-04-2009, 21:09
I am late also.

I have fractured ribs on 2 occasions. Once in my 20's and once in my 40's. Both times I was back in the water. If I could don my wetsuit and harness/BC/cylinder I knew I could dive.
Getting back on a dive platform without a ladder was a different matter.

I suspect most PCP's in this day and age will err on the side of caution.

Split, you got lucky. LCF is spot on. A doc needs to weigh in on these decisions before anyone is stupid enough to dive. The location and degree of fracture needs to be known and the potential for something nifty like a punctured lung or lacerated liver needs to be considered. You could get really dead if your bet was wrong in this situation. Heh, heh, my initials are LCF. So we must be right?

Splitlip
01-04-2009, 21:22
You forget. I am Batman. No luck involved.

Doh. Just read LCF's post. Guess I am lucky.

Fact is, both ocassions my GP did check me out. The fractures in both cases were non displaced. I did not consider the possibilty of exacerbating the fracture.

Informative post, as I have no doubt I will do it it at least one more time in my lifetime.

Splitlip
01-04-2009, 21:23
Hey. Lulu. Did you just call me stupid?!

Lulubelle
01-04-2009, 21:26
Hey. Lulu. Did you just call me stupid?!

No, poverino. I called anyone who dives with a fracture without getting a thumbs up from their doc stupid.

People always think it won't happen to them. Problem with those of us who have spent time in ERs is that we have seen the people whom metaphorical lightning DID strike.

Splitlip
01-04-2009, 21:30
I spent my share of time in the ER.:smiley36: Mostly in my youth.

Then my daughter came along. Few more trips.

I know what you mean though.:)



Hey. Lulu. Did you just call me stupid?!

No, poverino. I called anyone who dives with a fracture without getting a thumbs up from their doc stupid.

People always think it won't happen to them. Problem with those of us who have spent time in ERs is that we have seen the people whom metaphorical lightning DID strike.