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Hi people,
Don't really know where to start, so I'll start at the start of the day.
Sunday the 19th
Went for a couple of dives in Loch Fyne. The 1st dive was Stallion rock from the shore which for those of you who don't know it, it involves a long hard walk down and back up a fairly steep hill. The dive went fine(36.8mtrs, 42mins, 8mins deco), then back up the hill. I felt fine. About an hour later we were helping a guy push over a barrell and on the way back I had a slight visual disturbance in the corner of my eyes, almost rainbow like in it's colours. This passed after a couple of minutes and I put it down to having looked at the sun or something. In all I had a 2hr 1 min surface interval.
Dive 2 was Kenmore point, which again involves a longer walk than Stallion, but not as steep. The dive was 30.4mtrs, 40mins, safetystop of 3 mins. The nearest my 'pooter got to deco was 5mins away. Then walked back up to the cars and un-kitted. When we were driving back to the pub I felt what can be described as a twinge in my L-hand shoulder but I put this down to carrying the gear up and down hills which was entirely possible. We spent a couple of hours in the pub and the pain got slightly worse but it still did not seem anything to be really worried about. I left the pub and started to drive down the road and this is when it all went fuc*king pear-shaped. I realise what I'm about to tell you I will get seriously flamed for but let this be a valuable lesson.
Once I got into Inverary the pain was that bad I was feeling really sick and had to stop and get out. I was on my own in the van, so there was no-one to point out the screamingly bloody obvious. I then travelled up the Rest and be Thankful(approx1600ft), needing to stop sometimes every 1/2 mile , sometimes I could manage 2-3 miles with the pain and my eyes beginning to cloud over. By this time I was getting out the van and physicly screaming to try and alleviate the pain. I will say that I do not have a mobile, so I was literally on my own in the middle of nowhere at this point. I struggled on down the other side of the rest and stopped at a lay-by again at which time I saw a friend hurtle past me and toot his horn hello. I know he carries an o2 kit. By now I'm in tears.
Now I got really fu*king stupid. Got home about 8pm, the whole distance being about 70 miles and I started about 4.30pm(do the math), ate 2 paracetomol and thought if I went to bed I would be fine in the morning. I was in and out the bath all night trying to deal with the pain and it took me 'till 3am for me to admit to myself that I was bent. Now I stupidly thought that there is nothing can be done for me at this time of night so I screamed and cried my way through till 8am on the Monday morning. As an afterthought I can remember at one point during the night thinking cutting my arms off at the shoulder would actually deal with the pain, stupid I know, but it's strange the way you're brain reacts when you're bent.
Anyway, 8am on Monday I took my carcass down to casualty in the Southern General. This was another mistake. I walked straight in and said/cried "My names Peter Kelly, I'm a diver suffering from decompression sickness. Put me on 02 and 'phone this number". The number was Aberdeen Hyperbaric Unit. After 1/2 hour I was still not on 02(I had told several people by this point), though the thoughtful buggers gave me a couple of Co-Codamol for the pain. Jeez, that was really going to help!!!! Finally a Doc came in, said she had just READ ABOUT IT IN A BOOK and I was suffering from decompression sickness and incase I didn't know was more commonly called the bends. Again I repeated for her to 'phone fuc*ing Aberdeen and put me on o2. Obviously I was getting a bit distraught by now. The Doc then put me on a saline drip and unbelievably injected into the drip some kind of seasickness drug. I asked if I could drink water. She did not know She then went and 'phoned Aberdeen. About 1/2 hour later she came back and told me that Aberdeen had told her to put me on 02 and they would get a pot ready for me. I also had loads of nurses and docs coming in to see what a bent diver looked like, as if I was some kind of bloody guinae pig. I'll tell you what a bent diver looks like. A curled up, snottery, crying mess. The Millport pot was ready for 9.30am, the hospital never got me there(approx 35miles) 'till 2.30pm.
 
When I got there the first thing the Doc wanted to know was who put the drip in. This was swiftly removed when I promised to start drinking water. They asked where the pain was which was from my shoulders all the way down to my wrists and my hands were just numb. Then I did strength tests which I did not have any. Needless to say I was taken into the chamber suffering from what the kind doctor in the Southern diagnosed as the bends and thought a seasickness injection might help.
After about 1/2hour they checked my pain and strenghth with no change. This went on for another couple of hours every 1/2hr untill I suddenly felt a bit of strenghth coming back and a lessening of the pain. All in all I was at 18mtrs for 4-5 hrs and decompressing at 9mtrs for 3-4hrs. I now hold the dubious distinction of the longest ever treatment Millport has done in 1 sitting. For those that know it was a RN table 5 or 6 with 2 extensions. I reckon the table is 5hrs and an extension adds another 2 hours. This is the maximum Millport can do and if I relapsed during the night then it would have been off to Aberdeen with me. Thats how borderline on severity I was.
 Went to hospital overnight and woke up the next day(Tuesday) feeling still pretty sore, though nothing compared to Monday. My elbows, wrists and hands were tender, but my shoulder still had a dull ache. So it was back into the pot for whats called a COMEX2. This was a quick 3hr 02 soak which alleviated the pain that was left even more. Back to hospital for observation overnight and to see if I had to go in again the next day. Thankfully I was reasonably OK, But felt thouraly kicked about.

 The reasons for the bend are simple. Dive bloody computers. When mine was downloaded and examined(I had followed mine to the letter) I had missed a shitload of stops according to the Buhllmans and on the 2nd dive I was actually off the table. The dive-doc said with the invention of 'pooters the bent diver rate almost trebled overnight. This on top of the walk up and down to the site, the water temp 7dg, the climb over the Rest, the fact I've had a bend before and that I smoke did not help my cause in any way. 
 The advice is really for me to never dive again, but if I want to then take at least a year out and see the specialist at Aberdeen before I go back again. I'm still considering what to do, but I'll make my mind up soon with this still fresh in my memory. I suspect I will dive again but will seriously change the way I dive and what kind of dive I do. I had begun to get blase and stopped treating 35/40mtr dives as deep. Well I let you into a secret. There deep enough to really hurt you.
 Where I did fuck up was not admitting to myself a great deal sooner that I had a problem, but my brain just would not admit it to itself. Stupid I know, but there you go. The Southern Hospital should have had me dealt with a lot quicker and listened to what I was saying instead of arsing about with seasickness drugs. I can't quite believe that myself even as I type this.
Today(Thursday) I'm fine, just a bit of stiffness left and a great deal of stupidity 
Apart from that they were cracking dives. I would recommend them from a boat though.
I'd also like to thank the boys and girls at the pot and Millport hospital, they were great and I couldn't have asked for more. Nothing was too much trouble and the care was spot on. They even had a few cute nurses to cheer up my days. It's just a pity I wasn't ill enough to warrant a bed bath, but beggers can't be choosers. If you're going to get bent then this is the place to go.
Peter


(Edited by peter k at 5:04 pm on Jan. 23, 2003)


(Edited by peter k at 5:09 pm on Jan. 23, 2003)
 

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Glad to see that you're still here,I presume that you're writting unassisted too.Take care,Hobby.
 

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Bloody #### Peter K - glad you're still alive!  Get yourself sorted, you and I are due a dive as soon as my tattoos are finished and healed.  And when I guess how you knew my birthday, you owe you a huge sticky cream bun in case you forgot about that bit.  If I can't guess, I owe you one.  A LARGE one!!  :lurk:
 

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Pete man, what a tale!  Hope you're swiftly on the mend pal, and hurry along with the happy ending.  seriously, hope you're feeling better.
 

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Just not enough dive time.
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Glad to see you are alive Pete. I hope you are feeling better, assuming you were potted, you should get a follow up in about a month and shouldnt dive until this gives you the all clear, then slowly slowly OK, we dont want to loose anybody from here mate.

Scary stuff makes Adam's 'incident' seem trivial, but without wishing to downgrade Pete's story at all and state the bloody obvious, the Pots are open 24/7 (at least Whipps Cross is) so get you arse in as soon as possible. For numbers and locations call BSAC HQ, or 07831 151 523 or Whipps Cross 0208 539 5522 ext 5150 0r 5128 (Dr. Martin Farrell or Dr. Sanchez) for help. In case anyones wondering Adams story is in Surface Interval.

Matt
 

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I guess the fact that we've read this much means you've been treated and are hopefully on the mend. As for anyone flaming you, I don't think so, it's a brave person that can say "yeah, I did this, even though I know better...". This could happen to anyone of us at anytime. Hopefully you'll be back on line soon to  tell us about a succcessful recompression treatment
best wishes
Steve
 

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Yes, THANKS, for having the balls to admit to this and to post it as a warning to all of us....
It happens, if in doubt then presume the worst!!!!

Hope things are working out for you Peter.
 

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Peter wishing you a fully recovery and thanks to all who have posted recently about trips to the pot.  

It has definitely caused me to situp and take notice,  I suspect I would be in denial if I experienced minor symptoms of a bend, but having seen the reports recently I can see that better safe than sorry is the way to approach this.

Thanks again Peter, Mark and Matt and thanks for the numbers Matt,  I am going to store them in my mobile now and would recommend that others also follow suit.

Kind Regards,
Darren
 

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Hey Pete,

At least you had the sand not merely to admit to it, but to post here also to offer both guidance and a thorough description of the symptoms and the fall out. We done mate and glad to see you're still with us!!

Care to go into the treatment side of things for us too??

Get well soon dude.
 

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Bren looks like Pete's going to add later.
Adam needed 5 hrs on table 6. As I remember it, it involves recompression down to 18mtrs and 02/Air cycles for about 2 hrs (20mins/10mins cycles or thereabouts) then a slow rise to 9m on 02 followed by 60min/10min cycles on 02/Air again (for approx 2 1/2 hrs). Followed by 30min to get back to normal pressure at the rate of 0.3m per min on 02. If the symptoms have subsided you get another bash the next day (or later anyway as you probably have DCI) for 2 hrs, not sure what the regime is there. I'm sure you could have a scurry round the net and find USN Table 6 if you wanted to (Hint). Following that you are advised to return one month later for a follow up and then if all-clear you are 'allowed' to dive again. Of course the last bit isnt enforcable and if you are in BSAC you need to sign the self-cert accordingly and possibly get medical approval next year. If the symptoms show no improvement after blast one, you probably dont have DCI and can ignore what happened. Adam went into a mono-place affair, a long see-through cylinder but would have had to go into the big pot for session 2 if he'd needed it. In the mono-place they had a speaker system for comms and placed a telly so he could see it and hear it through the speaker in the tube. The big-pot has masks and headphones. Oh yes in the mono-place you are in an 02 environment so no sparks are permitted, in fact they washed his hair to remove the gel in case it caught light. The big-pot is an air environment so you can take a book in and the nurse is in with you, not so the mono-place.
All in all good fun. The staff were very professional and looked at the dive plan with us to see if they could spot any obvious causes. We had a slight rise and fall in the middle of the dive, something like 3 m, they like to see no more than 1.5 to 2 max. Hope that helps.
Matt

(Edited by MATTBIN at 5:06 pm on Jan. 23, 2003)
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
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I've edited up above
Yeah Matt, that was the table they put me in at first but Aberdeen told them to keep me there giving me extensions on this. I already knew everything that has been said above but just wouldn't admit it to myself. The pot was big enough for me and an attendant who does this shit on a voluntary basis. The guys were great and did not mess about with wanting to go home early or anything like that. They just stayed for as long as Aberdeen told them. I think the reason that Aberdeen was so involved is because of the state I was in and they wanted to know what was going on incase that was where I ended up. Also I was borderline on whether Millport could treat me I think and the Pros are in Aberdeen. I have been told all week that I'm a lucky boy, but somehow I just don't feel that lucky.
Hope the boy is OK. I've not read what happened to him yet.
Peter
 

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Peter,

I wish you all the best for the future and sincerely thank you for actually having the balls to post your experience.  

It has certainly been a wakeup call for me and I can assure you I will not be as dismissive of symptoms in myself as I would have been if I had not read your story.

I hope you reach the right decision with your diving,  it can't be an easy decision to make


Thanks again and keep well,
Darren
 

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'kin #### Pete ... you are a lucky boy. Thank God you're fine and you're gonna make a full recovery.

When you're feeling a wee bit better I'll take you out for a few beers and you can recount the sorry tale again.

Take it easy mate.
 

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I've just read the editted version - Bloody #### Pete.
Being wise afer the event is pretty #### easy, thanks for taking the time to post, it couldnt have been easy. I sincerely hope you get to a full recovery and dive again if you want to, but rest assured that nobody has the right to make that decision for you or try to convince you one way or the other. Whichever way it is it will be a hard and brave decision. Keep posting and stay in touch as I've sort of got to like you along the way, thought you were an arsehole first off, you probably thought the same of me.
I hope you dont mind I added a note to Handbag.net about your incident as I thought it incedibly brave of you.
Take great care my friend.
Matt

ps if you are giving up what kit you flogging ;-)
M

(Edited by MATTBIN at 5:56 pm on Jan. 23, 2003)
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
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The guys in the chamber have already claimed first shout on anything I'm selling. That was when I knew the "When can I dive again?" question I was not going to get the reply I wanted to here. As I said I think I probably will, but I'll really have to think about it.
I suppose divers must be a special breed of people that even after something like there first question is "When can I dive again?" When I woke up in hospital and looked out the window on Wed, it was a lovely day. The first thought that went through my head was "Great day for a dive and the Catalina is only along the road".
 You're right. I did think you were an arsehole, always sticking up for that girlfriend of yours(Ms Bell). I suppose my sense of humour is hard to pin down sometimes, but everyone wants to have my babies eventually. I still stand by the Salem Express, but she'll be glad to know that isn't exactly on this years calender anymore. Only joking Lou, lets not go there again.
As for [email protected], no problem, I just couldn't be bothered with some of the arsholey comments it would have recieved there.
Peter
Peter
 

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Sorry Pete,

I've just read your re-edited piece and the new rider/foot-note at the bottom of your posting. 'kin 'ell


If you're gonna take some time out/off diving (or...gulp....give up completely!), I offer you my utmost respect sir. Good decision - the dive will always be there in future, we on the otherhand (as your incident might prove) might not!!

I know Commercial divers have to take at least 4 weeks off when they get a hit, same with you, or are you gonna take the full year?? At least you're around to make the decision (result) and, as has been said above, it's not an easy one for any active diver to make. Once again, glad you're still with us to recount the tale.

Stay safe mate,
 

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By 'eck lad!

Glad you are still with us. Hopefully you being good enough to share your experience will make us all reassess our diving and prevent things from going pear shaped in the future......

Brave man.
 

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Peter
Just a short note, the same as everyone else, to wish you well
 

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Pete,
you know what you did wrong, as do we.  You had the strength to post what happenened, which is a #### sight more than other bent divers I've known.  The most important things is that you're alright.
Looking forward to meeting you on the Mull trip.  I shall take the piss, but you won't have to buy any drinks when I'm around. Hope you're back in the water soon.
Best
Rob
BTW you got a bend, but at least you were getting wet when I (and- let's face it - most of the people reading this) were sat on our arses moaning about the weather.
 

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Hey Pete in another thread I asked what had happened to you and you directed me here... sorry mate I feel like such a prat, I just hadn't gotten around to reading all of the posts in YD lately, they are coming so thick and fast these days it's hard to keep up..

You are bloody lucky mate and I'd like to thank you as have the others for letting us know all of the details. I really hope you get back into the water soon because it's obvious that you love diving and I hope this incident does not stop you doing something so important to you.

My very very best regards mate
Dave.
 
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