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Ear Pain, Scuba Diving (cont.)

Exams and Tests

The physician will evaluate the possibility of ear squeeze with a series of questions regarding the dive. These questions not only help diagnose the ear squeeze but also detect other potential dive injuries.

  • Did the diver experience difficulty clearing the ear?
  • Did the symptoms begin during descent or ascent?
  • Were the symptoms present during the dive or after reaching the surface?
  • How long did the symptoms last?
  • Is there a history of ear or sinus infections?

The physician will then examine the ear with an otoscope (ear scope). The exam may reveal:

  • a normal eardrum,
  • swelling and redness of the eardrum, or
  • a hole in the eardrum.

Hearing loss or facial paralysis may also be present. X-rays and blood tests are not needed.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 4/6/2016

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Dysbarism »

Although dysbarism includes problems associated with high altitude and aerospace endeavors, dysbarism also relates to the increasing pressures of descending under water that are usually experienced in free or assisted dives.

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