27.03.2017 – Why cetaceans don’t get the bends?
The “bends” or decompression sickness in scuba-divers, happens when gas bubbles expand to quickly and block blood flow somewhere in the circulatory system. This expanded gas bubbles also occur inside organs and even inside the bones. This may cause several health complications from disorientation, vomiting, paralysis, accompanied by excruciating pain and in extreme cases, death. Cetaceans and more specifically deep diving cetaceans, do not breathe under water and have evolved in the aquatic environment to search and hunt underwater at hundreds of meters down, only with the oxygen present in their blood and organs accumulated at surface, while breathing at one atmospheric pressure, were “Henry´s Law” has little influence.
by Daniel Jardim
10.00: Common dolphins, Striped dolphins
14.30: Bottlenose dolphins, Caretta caretta