Decompression Illness (DCI), commonly known as “the bends”, is a serious condition that results from a reduction in the ambient pressure surrounding a body. A good example is what happens when a diver surfaces too quickly without giving his/her body a chance to acclimate to the change in pressure when they ascend.
DCI encompasses two diseases, decompression sickness (DCS) and arterial gas embolism (AGE). DCS is thought to result from nitrogen bubbles expanding in tissue and causing local damage, while AGE results from nitrogen bubbles entering the lung circulation, traveling through the arteries and causing tissue damage at a distance by blocking blood flow at the small vessel level. DCS is the result of inadequate decompression following exposure to increased pressure. In some cases, the disease is mild and not an immediate threat. In other cases, serious injury does occur. When this happens, the quicker treatment begins, the better the chance for a full recovery.
Oxygen Biotherapeutics has a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement with the US Navy for DCI. Per the agreement, we supply Oxycyte PFC emulsion for their ongoing preclinical research exploring the potential of using Oxycyte for decompression illness.
Oxycyte and Decompression Illness – Dr. Gerald Klein explains Decompression Illness.