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NEWS | Feb. 21, 2017

Military equipment helping injured Soldiers get back into the fight

By Sgt. Marco Gutierrez 350th Public Affairs Detachment (U.S. Army Central)

The training ran for three main purposes: to train soldiers in the equipment operation, for Soldier advancement, and to help a soldier with an injury sustained during a previous training exercise.

Unfortunately, one of our Soldiers received an injury to his hand, so this training will help us teach our Soldiers on the use of the equipment, while helping our injured Soldier heal faster, said Sgt. Christopher Miller, from Elkhart, Ind., and a salvage diver with the 511th EDD.

“The injury I sustained is a laceration that resulted in 11 stitches on the palm of my hand,” explained Spc. John Egizii, from Cleveland, Ohio, and salvage diver with the 511th.

Miller, explained that depth therapy helps the body heal a bit faster by pushing Oxygen to the body faster, which helps with the healing process.

“This is something even civilian hospitals are doing,” added Miller.

While the injury to the Soldier was unfortunate, the resulting training for the 511th EDD was valuable. Because, they were able to use the injury for training purposes, and help soldiers in the unit practice skills to help them advance.

In order to advance to first class diver from salvage diver, one has to be proficient in the duties of a first class diver check-off list, Miller said. He went on to explain a few of the requirements which include duties such as that of an inside tender, performing diagnosis tables, identifying dive related injuries, and giving intravenous injections at depth.

All of our soldiers are combat life saver qualified but in order to be a first class diver you have to be proficient in being an inside tender, which is a military term for a hyperbaric nurse, said 1st Sgt. Tyler Dodd, a master diver with the 511th, and native of Upper Pocosin, Va.

“Any time you have a patient or a diver in the chamber, you need to have an inside tender,” Miller added.

“Training like this is important, because Soldiers have to remain proficient,” Dodd said. He added that the training becomes more important as the 511th EDD Soldiers are responsible for a unique piece of emergency medical equipment. Dodd said, we are the only U.S. military in Kuwait with a recompression chamber, and also the only ones in the Northern Region of U.S. Army Central Command area of operations.

After about an hour in the chamber, Egizii explained that he was feeling much better, saying “I don’t have any pain in my hand.” He also added, everyone who comes up to me lets me know that it is healing much faster, and I am feeling better.