home
RSS
October 11th, 2010
02:13 PM ET

Ascent could bring health risks to miners

Work to rescue 33 miners from a copper mine 2,200 feet below Chile's Atacama Desert is about to take a dramatic turn.

The first miners could be pulled from the mine as early as Tuesday evening.  Chilean Health Minister Jaime Manalich says they are in good spirits and, overall, in very good health. However, some of the men have shown signs of anxiety and some have had minor cardiac issues, Manalich added.

The miners will be switched over to a liquid diet six hours before they begin their trip to the surface in case they vomit on the way up. The rescue capsule will spin as it rises to the surface, possibly causing dizziness and even panic.

MIR astronaut Jerry Linenger knows something about isolation and confinement. He says his five months in space left him weak and with bone loss. "Down in the mines you have gravity pulling you down. There will be disorientation–turning your head will feel like doing 100 backflips in a row," he said.

Chilean Mining Minister Laurence Golborne is concerned about the miners being re-introduced to sunlight abruptly. Special sunglasses have been sent in an effort to make sure the miners don't suffer damage to their retinas.

The miners have been monitored very closely since they were first trapped on August 5.  The miners were given special shirts and shorts that pull sweat away from the body due to concern about skin infections.  They're also wearing special socks that help prevent athlete's foot and other fungal infections. They've even had a series of vaccinations including a tetanus booster and flu shot to help boost their immune systems.

The men have been exercising for an hour a day.  One of the miners, Yonni Barrios, is a paramedic and has been weighing his fellow miners daily, taking  blood tests and doing daily urine analysis.  That information is downloaded to a Palm Pilot that has been sending the information back to the surface so that medics and personal trainers can check to make sure the miners are well.  They have been tailoring the miners' exercise routines to the day's figures.

Dr. Bailus Walker, an environmental and occupational medicine expert at Howard University Medical Center, says one concern is the effect the barometric pressure will have on their bodies as they're brought up. "You'll see muscular aches and pains in the joints called 'the bends' as a result of the decompression. You could see some respiratory difficulties called 'the chokes.' You'll see increased blood pressure, and some lung damage–but the adequate supply of oxygen should keep lung problems at a minimum."

Update:

The bends, also known as decompression sickness, is a painful condition usually seen in deep sea divers surfacing too quickly. It can also occur when descending from high altitudes. Nitrogen bubbles can form in the blood and tissue when the pressure around someone in the air or water changes rapidly.

James Polk, NASA's deputy chief medical officer, says his agency considered decompression sickness but because the miners were at sea level, found the risk to be very low. "We did the calculations. We found the risk was negligible."

The addition of oxygen in the escape module will also decrease the risk for any nitrogen bubble formation, he said.

Experts say psychological adjustments will be a huge factor. "These men spent 20 days totally cut off in the dark until the first bore hole was made," Linenger said. "So they were in survival mode, which is tough psychologically because you are in a life and death situation."

Once out, the miners will be examined on site and hospitalized for a mandatory two days.  During that time  they'll be monitored and receive physical and mental health care. Doctors will keep an eye out for things like nightmares, panic attacks, anxiety and claustrophobia, among other potential issues.


soundoff (1,651 Responses)
  1. Mercedes Sprinter Refrigerator Repair

    Very good post. I certainly appreciate this website. Continue the good work!

    https://www.soyyooestacaido.com/www.watsonbuys.com

    June 29, 2021 at 03:46 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Trang Sparlin

    Tory for a moment and look at a feasible origin. MyCitadel is a payment system that manages US and Canadian customers mostly catering to poker cash related matters. The world class participant started his profession in early seventy's.

    https://www.4shared.com/account/home.jsp

    June 29, 2021 at 05:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. RV Repair San Clemente California

    I was very pleased to find this great site. I want to to thank you for your time for this fantastic read!! I definitely really liked every little bit of it and I have you saved as a favorite to see new stuff on your blog.

    http://www.cies.org.pe/sites/all/modules/pubdlcnt/pubdlcnt.php?file=https://www.ocrvmotorcoaches.com/&nid=10840

    June 29, 2021 at 05:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Bobbyoffek

    [url=http://onlinepharmacywithoutaprescription.ru/]online pharmacy no dr prescriptions[/url]

    June 29, 2021 at 06:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Camper Repairs Near Me

    https://validator.aaf.edu.au/Shibboleth.sso/Logout?return=http://ocrv.club/

    June 29, 2021 at 06:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Nearby RV Repair

    http://www.localfarmmarkets.org/facebook.php?URL=https://www.www.newrvowners.com

    June 29, 2021 at 06:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Mercedes Benz Sprinter Repair 19444

    https://syntone.ru/redirect.php?url=http://ocrvcenter.biz

    June 29, 2021 at 07:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. MatthewWar

    [url=http://onlineviagraprescription.com/]viagra 100mg without a prescription[/url]

    June 29, 2021 at 10:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Mercedes Camper Van Repair Shop

    I could not refrain from commenting. Very well written!

    https://www.iexprofs.nl/go/14940/link.aspx?url=https://www.ocrvcenter.org/

    June 29, 2021 at 13:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. RV Repair Shops Near My Location

    Way cool! Some very valid points! I appreciate you penning this write-up and also the rest of the site is extremely good.

    http://www.tces.hlc.edu.tw/dyna/netlink/hits.php?id=286&url=https://ocrvmotorsports.org

    June 29, 2021 at 13:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Sprinter Repair Costa Mesa

    Itís nearly impossible to find experienced people about this subject, however, you seem like you know what youíre talking about! Thanks

    https://forum.physiobase.com/redirect-to/?redirect=http://ocrvcenter.com/

    June 29, 2021 at 15:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Gmc Luxury Van Repair

    http://www.alqueriadelbasket.com/?r=contacto/cambiaidioma&nouidioma=eng&url=https://ocrvcenter.com

    June 29, 2021 at 15:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Custom Paint Shop Near Me

    http://www.campeggitalia.com/redirect/redirect.asp?sito=http://fleetservicesorangecounty.com/

    June 29, 2021 at 17:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. RV Repair Huntington Beach

    Iím impressed, I have to admit. Rarely do I come across a blog thatís equally educative and engaging, and without a doubt, you've hit the nail on the head. The problem is something which not enough folks are speaking intelligently about. I am very happy that I found this during my search for something concerning this.

    https://press.husqvarna-motorcycles.com/Mailing_Redirect.aspx?mailingid=37014&email=tomwebb@me.com&checkid=3ce553ad-a4c8-4cff-8157-9d296087b89f&redirect=https://ocrvcenter.biz

    June 29, 2021 at 17:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Bobbyoffek

    [url=http://onlinepharmacywithoutaprescription.ru/]canadian pharmacy online no script[/url]

    June 29, 2021 at 20:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. Sprinter Repair Shops Near Me

    http://result.folder.jp/tool/location.cgi?url=https://ocrvshop.com

    June 29, 2021 at 21:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Camper Repair Places Near Me

    Hi, I do believe this is an excellent web site. I stumbledupon it 😉 I am going to come back yet again since i have bookmarked it. Money and freedom is the best way to change, may you be rich and continue to guide others.

    https://www.limba.com/showObject.php?idjaz=15&r_url=http3A2F2Focrvempire.com/&o_cli=B_57656

    June 29, 2021 at 21:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. Sprinter Repair Orange County

    Way cool! Some very valid points! I appreciate you writing this article plus the rest of the site is extremely good.

    http://guodu.h5uc.com/h5.php?url=https://ocrv.info

    June 29, 2021 at 21:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. RV Repair Mission Viejo

    https://www.invisalign-doctor.com.au/api/redirect?url=http://ocrv.me/

    June 29, 2021 at 22:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. RV Repair Orange County California

    http://mogu2.com/cgi-bin/ranklink/rl_out.cgi?id=2239&url=https://ocrvluxurycoaches.com

    June 29, 2021 at 22:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. 2006 Dodge Sprinter 2500 Heater Control Repair

    http://analizsite.bravesite.ru/redirect.php?url=https://fleetautorepairshop.com

    June 29, 2021 at 22:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. Sprinter Mechanic Near Me

    A fascinating discussion is definitely worth comment. I do believe that you should write more about this subject matter, it might not be a taboo subject but typically people don't talk about these topics. To the next! Kind regards!!

    http://passerelle.or.jp/modules/wordpress/wp-ktai.php?view=redir&url=https://www.fleetrepairshops.com/

    June 29, 2021 at 23:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. Sprinter Van Collision Repair Shop Near Me

    http://validator.webylon.info/check?uri=https://sprintervanrepairnearme.com/

    June 29, 2021 at 23:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. Limo Van Repair Shop Near Me

    The next time I read a blog, I hope that it won't disappoint me as much as this one. After all, Yes, it was my choice to read through, but I actually believed you would have something interesting to talk about. All I hear is a bunch of whining about something you can fix if you were not too busy seeking attention.

    http://www.01happy.com/redirect.php?u=http://campervanrepairshop.com

    June 30, 2021 at 00:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. Williamlem

    healthyman

    June 30, 2021 at 00:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. Nearby RV Repair

    https://utmagazine.ru/r?url=https://www.ocrv.mobi/

    June 30, 2021 at 01:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. RV Repair Shops Near Me

    You're so cool! I do not believe I've read through a single thing like that before. So nice to discover another person with unique thoughts on this issue. Really.. many thanks for starting this up. This site is one thing that is required on the web, someone with a little originality!

    http://no-smok.net/nsmk/InterWiki?action=goto&oe=EUC-KR&url=http://ocrvparts.com/

    June 30, 2021 at 02:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. RV Repairs Nearby

    http://gdln.org/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=ocrv.art

    June 30, 2021 at 04:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. MatthewWar

    [url=http://onlineviagraprescription.com/]cheap viagra no prescription[/url]

    June 30, 2021 at 04:39 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. Luxury Sprinter Van

    https://webhosting-wmd.hr/index?URL=commercialrepairshop.com/

    June 30, 2021 at 05:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. Mercedes Benz Sprinter Repair Service

    Aw, this was an incredibly good post. Spending some time and actual effort to create a good articleÖ but what can I sayÖ I hesitate a whole lot and never seem to get nearly anything done.

    https://etarp.com/cart/view.php?returnURL=http://boxtruckrepairshop.com

    June 30, 2021 at 07:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. Camper Repair Shop Near Me

    https://www.eichlernetwork.com/openx/www/delivery/ck.php?ct=1&oaparams=2__bannerid=3__zoneid=4__cb=2fd13d7c4e__oadest=https://www.rvmarketingexperts.com/

    June 30, 2021 at 08:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. RV Repairs Near Me

    Very good article. I absolutely appreciate this site. Keep it up!

    https://b.grabo.bg/special/dealbox-492×73/?rnd=2019121711&affid=19825&deal=199235&cityid=1&city=Sofia&click_url=https://ocrv.today

    June 30, 2021 at 08:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. RV Repair Huntington Beach

    After looking over a few of the blog articles on your site, I truly appreciate your way of writing a blog. I bookmarked it to my bookmark site list and will be checking back in the near future. Take a look at my web site as well and tell me your opinion.

    http://www.istomgames.com/redirect.php?azon=products/11/ios_full&url=https://orangecountyrvrepair.com

    June 30, 2021 at 09:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. Jamesgek

    best price drugs 24

    June 30, 2021 at 12:28 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. CharlesGlalf

    online pharmacy canadian pharmacy cialis

    June 30, 2021 at 13:03 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. LouieAdoft

    skypharmacy viagra for men [url=http://canadianpharmacyonlinenoscript.com/]canadian pharmacy[/url]

    June 30, 2021 at 13:08 | Report abuse | Reply
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31

Post a comment


 

CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

Advertisement
About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.