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  1. Peter Wilmshurst

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    Scuba diving involves a large number of physiological and psychological stresses, but the ways in which these affect the autonomic nervous system are poorly understood. This is at least partly because physiological measurement in the diver's environment can be difficult. This study provides new information about the parasympathetic and sympathetic control of heart rate during immersion, submersion, and scuba diving. However, we need to bear in mind that measurements made during a brief shallow dive in a heated pool may not mimic proper diving. Most diving is deeper, when the effects of raised partial pressures of nitrogen and oxygen are present. Much diving, say around Britain, is in water that is much colder, dark, and murky, with strong currents. It is often strenuous and exhilarating and sometimes scary.

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