Scuba Diving Depth and Blood Pressure

by Gary Lazarus
(Bellingham, WA)

Is there any correlation between one's blood pressure and the depth to which they descend? In other words, does one's blood pressure increase at depth?

Hi Gary,

That is an interesting question and one I had never thought about (I will note, though, that I do not have high blood pressure).

It was hard to find an adequate answer to your question but I finally found it in the March/April 2009 issue of Alert Diver magazine.

In case you aren't familiar with it, Alert Diver is the magazine put out by DAN (Divers Alert Network).

DAN, for those that don't know them, is a highly regarded non-profit "medical and research organization dedicated to the safety and health of recreational scuba divers and associated with Duke University Medical Center." I have been a member of DAN since I started diving. Their website is www.diversalertnetwork.org.

They have an excellent article about scuba diving and hypertension in their latest issue.

This is what they had to say about high blood pressure and diving:

"If controlled properly, moderately HBP (high blood pressure) does not compromise fitness to dive. If your blood pressure remains high despite treatment, or if it is erratic, you should avoid diving."

And they go on to answer to your question:

"Diving increases blood pressure, even in divers with normal pressure. This occurs due to the immersion-caused shift of the blood into the thorax, the constriction of peripheral blood vessels and exercise. Divers with high blood pressure that is not well controlled face a significant risk from immersion and cold: Together they can cause a sudden increase in blood pressure that can cause liquid from the capillaries to leak into the alveoli and flood the lungs. This is an acute life-threatening condition called immersion pulmonary edema."

So the answer to your question, thanks to DAN, is that yes, your blood pressure increases when you scuba dive.

Sorry it took me awhile to get back to you. Hopefully this answers your question.

I wish you all the best and safe diving.

Dianne

Comments for Scuba Diving Depth and Blood Pressure

Average Rating starstarstarstarstar

Click here to add your own comments

Rating
starstarstarstarstar
Blood Pressure
by: Anonymous

I do not have high blood pressure but I do have a brain aneurysm. I have to be careful not to do things that would raise my blood pressure to high as it could rupture. If the raise in blood pressure is not much higher than on the surface, I could do this. I need to know how much higher. Every article I read says only three bars (what are bars).

Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Information on Scuba Diving.



 Want to stay down longer and improve your buoyancy control and other diving skills? Our free report "Increase Your Bottom Time" along with our practical, weekly actionable tips will have you looking like a seasoned diver in no time. So come join us and see improvement on your very next dive!
(Click on the photo to join us now!)

Click here to subscribe


What's New

  1. Scuba Diving Tips For First Time

    Jan 29, 23 05:41 PM

    scuba diving tips for first time divers
    These scuba diving tips for first time divers will help improve buoyancy control, air consumption, equalization and boat diving. Improve on your very next dive!

    Read More

  2. 3 Boat Diving Etiquette Tips So You Look Like A Seasoned Diver

    Jan 18, 23 08:13 AM

    Boat diving etiquette tips for beginner scuba divers
    New to boat diving and need some boat diving etiquette tips? Here are some simple tips to help you feel more confident and look like a more experienced diver.

    Read More

  3. Scuba Diving Tips: Lots of Dive Tips And Advice To Improve Your Skills

    Jan 16, 23 04:51 PM

    boarding-dive-boat-bonaire.jpg
    We have lots of scuba diving tips to help improve your skills - air consumption, buoyancy control, ear clearing, dive safety, boat diving, video tips and more.

    Read More

  4. Useful Gift Ideas For Scuba Divers Under $10

    Nov 10, 22 04:36 PM

    scuba diving gift ideas under $10
    In this video, I share useful gift ideas for scuba divers - all under $10! Just because they are inexpensive (OK, cheap - LOL) doesn't mean they won't love them

    Read More

  5. How To Save Air Scuba Diving - Tips To Increase Your Bottom Time

    Oct 10, 22 12:55 PM

    How to save air scuba diving video
    Use these tips on how to save air scuba diving to help you stay down longer on your very dive. Improve your air consumption and get the most out of your dive.

    Read More