Nitrogen Narcosis

Narcosis while diving (also known as nitrogen narcosis, inert gas narcosis, raptures of the deep, Martini effect), is a reversible alteration in consciousness that occurs while diving at depth. The Greek word ναρκωσις (narcosis) is derived from narke, "temporary decline or loss of senses and movement, numbness", a term used by Homer and Hippocrates. Narcosis produces a state similar to alcohol intoxication or nitrous oxide inhalation, and can occur during shallow dives, but usually does not become noticeable until greater depths, beyond 30 meters (100 ft).

Apart from helium and probably neon, all gases that can be breathed have a narcotic effect. This effect is consistently greater for gases with a higher lipid solubility and there is good evidence that the two properties are mechanistically related. As depth increases, the mental impairment may become hazardous. Although divers can learn to cope with some of these effects, it is not possible to develop a tolerance. While narcosis affects all divers, predicting the depth at which narcosis will affect a diver is difficult, as susceptibility varies widely from dive to dive, and between individuals.

When narcosis appears, it may be completely reversed in a few minutes by ascending to a shallower depth with no long-term effects. For this reason, narcosis while diving in open water rarely develops into a serious problem as long as the divers are aware of its symptoms, and may ascend to manage it. Diving beyond 40 m (130 ft) is generally considered outside the scope of recreational diving: as narcosis and oxygen toxicity become critical factors, specialist training is required in the use of various gas mixtures such as trimix or heliox.

Read more about Nitrogen Narcosis:  Classification, Signs and Symptoms, Causes, Mechanism, Diagnosis and Management, Prevention, Prognosis and Epidemiology, History

Other articles related to "nitrogen, nitrogen narcosis, narcosis":

Common Diving Breathing Gases
... gases are Air is a mixture of 21% oxygen, 78% nitrogen, and approximately 1% other trace gases, primarily argon to simplify calculations this last 1 ... As its nitrogen component causes nitrogen narcosis it is considered to have a safe depth limit of about 40 metres (130 feet) for most divers, although the maximum ... Trimix is a mixture of oxygen, nitrogen and helium and is often used at depth in technical diving and commercial diving instead of air to reduce nitrogen narcosis and to avoid ...
Deep Water Blackout and Nitrogen Narcosis
... water blackout loosely to refer to the final stage of nitrogen narcosis ... Nitrogen narcosis is a neurological impairment caused by dissolved blood nitrogen under pressure ... The progressive signs and symptoms of nitrogen narcosis are Impairment of reasoning, judgement, memory and concentration Sense of well-being and levity Anxiety Loss of coordination and physical ...
Nitrogen Narcosis - History
... Junod was the first to describe symptoms of narcosis in 1834, noting "the functions of the brain are activated, imagination is lively, thoughts have a peculiar ... Yarborough demonstrated that gases other than nitrogen also could cause narcosis ... As hydrogen has only 0.55 the solubility of nitrogen, deep diving experiments using hydrox were conducted by Arne Zetterström between 1943 and 1945 ...
Hazards of Scuba Diving - Effects of Breathing High Pressure Gas - Nitrogen Narcosis
... Nitrogen narcosis or inert gas narcosis is a reversible alteration in consciousness producing a state similar to alcohol intoxication in divers who breathe high pressure gas ... Narcosis starts to affect some divers at 66 feet (20 m) ... At this depth, narcosis manifests itself as a slight giddiness ...