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[IP] Re: Scuba Diving
I'm a certified diver via PADI. I've been certified since the early 90's
and diabetic since 1979. I found a device (don't remember the name,
sorry) that replaced the mouthpiece of my snorkel. Attached to it was a
small bag with a valve. The bag can be filled with your liquid glucose
substance of choice. If you had a low you opened the valve and squeezed
the bag, getting a mouthful of liquid. Thankfully I never have had to
Several places that I've TRIED to go diving just won't listen to the
fact that I am an extremely well controlled diabetic or bother reading
letters from my endo explaining the same. Two years ago at Club Med in
the Turks & Caicos Islands I had to visit the Club doctor for an
opinion. I was sent there by the dive master the night before we were
supposed to dive. After a thorough examination by the dr. I still wasn't
allowed to dive. Legal issues.
Earlier this year in Australia we were going diving on the Great Barrier
Reef. I took a chance and didn't tell any of the dive staff that I was
diabetic. I filled out the waiver, answering the question "do you have
any condition which effects diving" as 'No' and took my chances.
When I dive I test for about 90 minutes before diving at 15 minute
intervals to see what my bg is doing and make sure that my bg is
slightly above normal before entering the water. I test again upon
surfacing. I do not dive with my pump on.
Did the first dive on the Reef with no problems. Once I was back on the
boat one of the dive masters saw me hooking the pump up and asked about
it. I knew it was game over at that point. None of the staff had noticed
me dropping blood onto test strips several times, but they notice me
hooking up the darn infusion set. No second dive for me. I could
snorkel, but not dive. The boat captain was pretty apologetic about
having to refuse me the second dive but explained that it was a
liability issue should anything happen. I was told it was also very very
tough for diabetics to get certified to dive in Australia and that they
generally won't let diabetics dive at all.
I can completely agree with the legal and liability issues regarding
diabetics diving, but it still pisses me off.
Good luck finding the tools to let you dive. If you're looking to get
certified, talk to several dive shops. One of them has probably had
experience in dealing with diabetic divers in the past. I got lucky and
found one first time out. They were the one that recommended the
replacement mouth piece for me.
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