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Does anyone have more info? #277313
04/18/08 07:10 PM
04/18/08 07:10 PM
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 7
kaybee Offline OP
kaybee  Offline OP
I saw the following on

Police Report Case (ii) Death by Asphyxia
About 11:40a.m. on Friday, April 4, Police visited Amigos del Mar Dive Shop on the beach front where the lifeless body of Gordon Burke Stroud, 63yrs Canadian tourist was observed with no apparent signs of injury.
Initial investigation revealed that about 11:15a.m. that same morning Stroud was one of 11 Canadian tourists on a diving tour at Tuffy/San Pedro Canyons located east of town, when he emerged out of the water after deciding to discontinue his diving. He appeared not to be feeling well and despite saying that he was okay, the tour guide made his way to shore after noticing him going unconscious. Upon arrival at the dive shop he was examined by a medical officer who pronounced him dead. A Post Mortem examination conducted on his body on Saturday, April 5, certified the cause of death as “Bronchial Aspiration Asphyxia due to Chronic Emphymia, Asthma type”.

I don't want to cause a panic or hit a nerve, but I'm wondering if anyone out there has more details about what exactly happened.

Re: Does anyone have more info? [Re: kaybee] #277331
04/18/08 09:34 PM
04/18/08 09:34 PM
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 5,522
Birdland - 1 mile north
ScubaLdy Offline
ScubaLdy  Offline
There will be no panic unless you have chronic emphymia - asthna type and insist on diving.

Take only pictures leave only bubbles
Re: Does anyone have more info? [Re: ScubaLdy] #277346
04/19/08 02:54 AM
04/19/08 02:54 AM
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 8,880
seashell Offline
seashell  Offline
Scubaldy, it is possible that the man didn't have emphysema before entering the water. See 2) below:

"Overinflation of the lungs can result as a scuba diver ascends toward the surface without exhaling. During ascent, compressed gas trapped in the lung increases in volume until the expansion exceeds the elastic limit of lung tissue, causing damage and allowing gas bubbles to escape into one or more of three possible locations: 1) Gas entering the pleural space can cause lung collapse or pneumothorax; 2) Gas entering the mediastinum (space around the heart, trachea and esophagus) causes mediastinal emphysema and frequently tracks under the skin (subcutaneous emphysema) or into the tissue around the larynx, precipitating a change in the voice characteristics; and 3) Gas rupturing the alveolar walls can dissect into the pulmonary capillaries and pass via the pulmonary veins to the left side of the heart, where it is distributed according to relative blood flow, resulting in arterial gas embolism (AGE) (2).

While mediastinal or subcutaneous emphysema usually resolves spontaneously, pneumothorax may require specific treatment to remove the air and reinflate the lung. AGE is a medical emergency requiring appropriate intervention, which may include recompression treatment.

Lung overinflation injuries from scuba diving can range from dramatic and life threatening to mild symptoms of chest pain and dyspnea. Although pulmonary barotrauma is relatively uncommon, prompt medical evaluation is necessary, and evidence for this condition should always be considered in the presence of respiratory or neurologic symptoms following a dive."

Frankly, despite the above, I'm still confused by the doctor's diagnosis. Emphysema means trapped air (in the lungs and/or lung tissue), aspiration in this regard would mean something sucked into the lungs, like water. Maybe the guy had asthma and that caused the pulmonary barotrauma? Is there a doctor in the house?

It's not my intention to be insensitive to the man's family and friends. They have my most sincere sympathy. But for myself, if and when it's my time, how this man passed sounds like a pretty good way to go.

Last edited by seashell; 04/19/08 03:02 AM.

A fish and a bird can fall in love, but where will they build their nest?

Re: Does anyone have more info? [Re: seashell] #277359
04/19/08 10:14 AM
04/19/08 10:14 AM
Joined: Feb 2008
Posts: 89
BamaB's Offline
BamaB's  Offline
This is one of the risks, it's terrible, but it happens other places to. This was the most incredible case I've ever heard of:

Re: Does anyone have more info? [Re: BamaB's] #277372
04/19/08 12:06 PM
04/19/08 12:06 PM
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 503
Dan Carey Offline
Dan Carey  Offline
&nbsp seashell,
I'm not a doctor, but I don't think that people get athsma while they're underwater. From what I've heard, people have athsma as a long term, chronic condidtion and they should avoid diving. It sounds like this fellow had athsma and dived anyway. You're describing mediastinal or subcutaneous emphysema, which sounds like a different condition brought on by poor diving technique.

&nbsp if you look closely, you'll notice that the police report was talking about emphymia, while you're talking about emphysema. While several of the letters are the same, I think that they're different conditions.

&nbsp &nbsp Dan


"Facts are the enemy of Truth"
Don Quixote
Re: Does anyone have more info? [Re: Dan Carey] #277381
04/19/08 01:49 PM
04/19/08 01:49 PM
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 12,757
San Pedro Belize
elbert Offline
elbert  Offline
.004% chance that a certified diver will ever get hurt, Thats a Divers Alert Network figure from PADI The Professional Association of Diving Instructors.
Almost every time I read or hear about a death of a tourist snorkeling or diving it seems they where old and out of shape doing something that a normal average healthy person would enjoy at a relaxed pace.
I feel sorry for the tour operators when this happens.
It hasn't happened to me yet but thats just luck and nothing to do with my being safer or better.
BamaB's your news story you published is describing a person dying from an embolism, thats the thing that kills you if you break the golden rule of diving ,'Never hold your breath' but you can get similar results by blockage from Pulmonary problems like chronic Athsma.
8000+ dives, 26 years and certified 2400 divers personally going with each on that first dive of their life .I Never have seen one embolism fatality.
not one , ever.
But Hell tomorrow I might be out there with a middle aged overweight business man that always wanted to dive and He kicks over on my shift. :-)

White Sands Dive Shops Daily Blog
Re: Does anyone have more info? [Re: elbert] #277382
04/19/08 01:56 PM
04/19/08 01:56 PM
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 5,522
Birdland - 1 mile north
ScubaLdy Offline
ScubaLdy  Offline
Thanks for the voice of reason and experience. I am an old fat lady and my children absolutely know the risks I take. The most important thing I can do is know myself and know my limitations. As much as I love to dive there are times I know not too. SCUBA is an incredible sport. My dive operators also know my strengths and weaknesses and are not afraid to be honest with me.

I’m not sure but I have a feeling as many people die snorkeling as do diving.

I used to joke and say I was more likely to get killed crossing the street in front of the hospital where I worked. But - I don't cross that street anymore so I guess I have to watch out for golf carts. LOL

Take only pictures leave only bubbles
Re: Does anyone have more info? [Re: ScubaLdy] #277400
04/19/08 05:33 PM
04/19/08 05:33 PM
Joined: Nov 2000
Posts: 8,880
seashell Offline
seashell  Offline
Dan Carey, I didn't say that the guy got asthma whilst under the water. In fact, I said perhaps the person had asthma in the first place. Also, there is no word such as 'emphymia' that I've been able to find. Therefore, I assumed it to be a typo for emphysema and in that regard, the article I reprinted discusses emphysema being created due to an asthmatic condition and result from diving.

A fish and a bird can fall in love, but where will they build their nest?

Re: Does anyone have more info? [Re: seashell] #277403
04/19/08 05:54 PM
04/19/08 05:54 PM
Joined: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,070
San Pedro Town
belizeonthebeach Offline
belizeonthebeach  Offline
Here we go again frown

Re: Does anyone have more info? [Re: belizeonthebeach] #277405
04/19/08 06:38 PM
04/19/08 06:38 PM
Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 118
Minnesota, USA
LoveH20 Offline
LoveH20  Offline
What if the guy DID suck in some water. Or what if his instructor wasn't paying attention to him. Beginners trust their instructors.

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