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Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society

The Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society (UHMS) is the primary source of information for diving and hyperbaric medicine physiology worldwide.



The UHMS was founded as the Undersea Medical Society in 1967, but in 1986 changed its name to the current one. The name change reflected the rapidly growing interest in hyperbaric oxygen physiology and therapy. The UHMS's purpose is to provide scientific information to protect the health of sport, military and commercial divers and to improve the scientific basis of hyperbaric oxygen therapy, promote sound treatment protocols and standards of practice and provide CME accreditation within its field.

Indications for hyperbaric oxygen

UHMS definition of Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBO): The patient breathes 100% oxygen intermittently while the pressure of the treatment chamber is increased to greater than one atmosphere absolute (atm abs). Current information indicates that pressurization should be at least 1.4 atm abs. This may occur in a single person chamber (monoplace) or multiplace chamber (may hold 2 or more people). Breathing 100% oxygen at 1 atm abs or exposing isolated parts of the body to 100% oxygen does not constitute HBO therapy.

UHMS approved Indications: The following indications are approved uses of hyperbaric oxygen therapy as defined by the Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Committee. The Committee Report can be purchased directly through the UHMS

  • Air or gas embolism
  • Carbon monoxide poisoning
    • Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Complicated by Cyanide Poisoning
  • Clostridal Myositis and Myonecrosis (Gas gangrene)
  • Crush Injury, Compartment syndrome, and other Acute Traumatic Ischemias
  • Decompression sickness
  • Enhancement of Healing in Selected Problem Wounds
  • Exceptional Blood Loss (Anemia)
  • Intracranial Abscess
  • Necrotizing Soft Tissue Infections (Necrotizing fasciitis)
  • Osteomyelitis (Refractory)
  • Delayed Radiation Injury (Soft Tissue and Bony Necrosis)
  • Skin Grafts & Flaps (Compromised)
  • Thermal Burns


Training in Hyperbaric Medicine occurs through a post graduate medical fellowship. The Hyperbaric medicine fellowship was approved by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) under the American Board of Preventive Medicine (ABPM). Information on approved HBO fellowships may be obtained through the ABPM.


The UHMS Charles W. Shilling Library is the largest repository of diving and hyperbaric research and clinical information –current and historical–in the world. The library is located at the Duke University Medical Center (DUMC) Library in Durham, NC. The collection consists of books, journals, reports, workshops, symposia, conference proceedings, and annotated bibliographies spanning the fields of diving, hyperbaric, and marine medicine. There is a small journal and newsletter collection dealing with diving safety and diving medicine. The library has extensive reprint files of articles, cataloged by author, related to diving and hyperbaric medicine and dating back to the 1930's.

Many of the UHMS publications have been scanned and are available online at the Rubicon Research Repository. Other articles can be found in the DUMC Archive finding aids.

Other external links

  • Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society
  • HBO evidence
  • Rubicon Research Repository
  • DUMC Archive
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Undersea_and_Hyperbaric_Medical_Society". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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