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That's Dude with an E
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A friend of mine has just started taking Atenolol for high blood pressure.
Is this OK whilst diving?
 

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Hi Dude,

I did a bit of research on this for a friend who was on similar medication.

It appears that it is not a definite no to diving but it maybe quite difficult to get clearance from a Doc.  The drug is a betablocker, this can cause problems with diving as it slows the heart and reduces tolerence for exercise.

Apparently it is possible for someone to be tested for their exercise tolerence while on the drug to see whether it maybe possible for them to dive.

However there are I believe other symptoms and side effects that can mask the symptoms of DCS.

So all in all not great news.

However apparently their are other drugs to control blood pressure, sartans or some such that are much more diving friendly.  

I am in no way qualified to advise but I would suspect a diving knowledgable doctor could provide advice and suggestions as to whether he could dive on his current medication or whether he would be suitable to be switched to something more diving friendly.

There is a list of Docs on the BSAC web site who might be able to assist and advice.

Hope that helps,
Daz

Disclaimer :- Do not take anything above as factual or correct,  I am in no way qualified on these types of things and even played truant during many biology lessons.
 

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Hi again Dude,

Found my previous thread and a few guys who replied are on Atenolol and are cleared to dive (Well I assume they were cleared to dive)..  So maybe not so bleak.

Here is the thread...

Blood pressure thread.
 

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As always, the best policy is to consult a diving medicine specialist. There are always three things to consider regarding diving on medication:
1) The underlying condition.
2) The medication (effects and side effects).
3) The effects of pressure on physiological processes.
Unfortunately, we still know almost nothing about how factors 2 and 3 interact, which is why doctors always tend to err on the side of caution.
 

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Commercial divers - of any type - are not permitted to dive when taking beta blockers. There are alternatives however, ACE inhibitors etc, but these cost more - what's his postcode !!?? Obviously the underlying reason for hypertension also comes into the equation. He needs a diving doc examination.
 

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<font color='#0000FF'>I was not sure if I had high blood pressure, everytime I went to the doctors it was quite high.

Last week had a monitor on for 24 hours it took readings every half hour, just found out it is normal.

I asked my DO at the club who is a GP about any problems I might have if it was found to be high, he said that if I was put on medication and it was still above 160 / 90 then I would have a problem.

Therefore I took him to mean if you are on medication and it is controlled then everything would be OK.  I think these are BSAC's recommendations, don't know about other agencies.

Please do not accept anything I say as correct, speak to medical ref.

Fiona
 
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