Discovery of Dysbaric Illness

Already in 1670, Robert Boyle demonstrated that Dysbaric Illness (DI) could be produced in a reptile by the sudden lowering of atmospheric pressure. Nearly two hundred years later the first case of DI was recorded in compressed air workers: In 1845 Triger reported that two men had suffered "very sharp pain" in the left arm and another had "pain in the knees and left shoulder" thirty minutes after emerging from a seven hour exposure to a pressure of between 2.4 atmospheres and 4.25 atmospheres 5. As technology advanced and supported longer exposures to greater pressures the incidence of DI gradually increased until it became recognized as an occupational illness in need of prevention and treatment.

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