If a diver has symptoms of decompression illness, or isn't sure, the diver should discontinue diving, seek medical attention and consult a dive physician. As you learned in Section Three, some areas have special diver emergency services that provide consultation and coordinate with local medical services to assist the diver.

The dive medical community lumps DCS and lung overexpansion injury under the clinical term decompression illness (DCI). They do this because the first aid and treatment are identical for both, and there's no need to distinguish between them when assisting a diver.

First aid for decompression illness includes having the diver lie down and breathe oxygen. Contact local emergency medical care, and the local diver emergency service (if available - or the closest recompression chamber). Your instructor will tell you the emergency contact information for your local diving areas.

Signs and symptoms of DCS include limb and joint pain, tingling, numbness, paralysis, shock, weakness, dizziness, difficulty breathing, unconsciousness and death. Decompression illness (DCI) is a clinical term for both decompression sickness and lung over expansion injuries.A diver with DCI should receive emergency oxygen, rescue breathing and CPR if necessary, and will require treatment in a recompression chamb