Saturday morning we dove the Ancient Mariner and a shallow reef with Scubatyme out of Pompano Beach. We stayed with Scubatyme and dove the Sea Emperor and a shallow reef that afternoon, with a short underwater trip to the United Caribbean.
|Wheel house on the Tortuga|
I found an anchor with about 100 yards of good line. I coiled the line and thought about taking the anchor and line back to the boat, but then decided against it since I was also carrying the big camera and did not want to use my BCD as a lift bag. So I left the anchor next to the wreck with the line nicely coiled next to it. Pity.
as well as the fish to the right, which I did not recognize. Fifteen minutes into the dive, I found myself at 99 feet, for which the NDL is 20 minutes, so I headed back to the outcropping and then went up to the top of the Wall at 50 feet and swam back to the anchor line. I kept my rate of ascent at about 30 ft per minute and stopped at 10 feet to clear a 1 minute deco obligation my computer showed before I surfaced.
I swam to the stern of the boat and climbed aboard, walked to my seat and got out of my gear. I felt tired, but good. I dried off and was joking with the other divers when someone handed me a snack bar. I took a bite of the sticky sweet bar and started to pass out. I sat down, then I lay down and then I was out.
I came to at the dock. I thought I had some food issue or maybe was hyperglyciemic. It really did not occur to me that I had decompression sickness. I was breathing O2 and had been given an IV saline drip. By the time we got to Aventura Hospital, I felt pretty good. I never did experience any pain, stiffness, nausea, or dizziness. I really had no symptoms at all except that I could not walk a straight line. I was ready to leave. My white cell count was high, however, and my blood pressure was erratic.
The doctor was a younger guy who really was doing a great job with a difficult patient. He convinced me to transfer to Mercy for evaluation by Dr. Montoya. It was late when I got there, however, and I did not see Dr. Montoya until the next morning.
All of my various scans were clear, but I was treated in the chamber anyway, and it helped. It helped a lot. So I got scheduled in and treated with a total of six chamber rides over 5 days. Three days into the treatments, Dr. Montoya used an X-ray to find two small lesions in my cerebellum. Apparently, I got hit sometime within the previous 12 months, as well, and I do remember a couple of weeks in August of 2012 during which I had some balance problems which then cleared themselves.
I left the hospital Wednesday night, but drove myself back both Thursday and Friday for additional chamber treatments. I was doing much better.
I was shocked to see the amount I was charged for the treatments I received. The total was about $50,000, of which the chamber treatments were only $16,000. I am so glad I had insurance.