A rat model of chronic moderate alcohol consumption and risk of decompression sickness

Peter Buzzacott, A. Mazur, Q. Wang, K. Lambrechts, M. Theron, F. Guerrero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


INTRODUCTION: This study aimed to establish if chronic, moderate, pre-dive alcohol consumption had any affect upon susceptibility to decompression sickness (DCS) in rats. METHODS: A treatment group of 15 rats were given water containing 12 mL ·L ⁻¹ of ethanol for four weeks. Controls (n = 15) were given water. Both groups were compressed with air to 1,000 kPa, followed by staged decompression. An additional 30 control rats from a similar previous experiment were added, raising the control-treatment ratio to 3:1. RESULTS: Rats in the treatment group consumed the equivalent of an 80 kg man drinking 2 L of 5 % alcohol by volume beer per day, which is three times the recommended daily limit for men. Overall, comparing the treatment group with the combined control groups neither weight (P = 0.23) nor alcohol consumption (P = 0.69) were associated with DCS. DISCUSSION: We observed that chronic, moderate alcohol consumption prior to compression was neither prophylactic nor deleterious for DCS in young, male rats.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)75-78
JournalDiving and Hyperbaric Medicine
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2015


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