Diving was a passion that launched a career for a young
doctor from Mexico City, Mexico. Nearly a decade later Dr. Jorge
Dario Gómez Castillo is trusted with the lives of many as
Medical Liaison for the Mayan Riviera and DAN Referral
His charge is the Hyperbaric Chamber on Cozumel, a public
chamber and one of three on the island. The hyperbaric chambers
are kept busy throughout the year with approximately 120 cases
of decompression sickness.
He said about 10 of those annual cases are those associated with
professional fisherman who push themselves in order to make a
Dr. Jorge Dario Gómez with his wife Jennifer.
celebrates their first anniversary in May of 2010. Both are
feed their families. He displays some pride in his
education of these professional divers, but also tells of
his frustration in that they have no other means to support
their families and put themselves in peril.
But his studies of applying pressure with oxygen on the
human body have led to new treatments of non-divers. He has
co-authored publications on Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBO)
in the treatment of acute hypoxic encephalopathies.
Dr. Gómez has lectured and taught
courses on the subject in his old home town of Mexico
City and in the United States. He has been involved in a Maya
Community Epidemiology Study in 2003, clinical trials,
Hyperbaric Sedation Control with the BIS
Hyperbaric Unit and Neuro Pshycometric Battery for DCI.
He turned his medical pursuits into the study of hyperbaric
medicine while an avid diver. Dr. Gómez is certified as a Dive
Master through PADI but admits he doesn’t get to dive as much as
he would like to. His diving travels has taken him to the waters
of Mexico, the Caribbean, Thailand, Australia and the United
June 5th, 2010, he was the recipient of the Undersea and
Hyperbaric Medicine Society (UHMS) Young Scientist/Medical
Doctor Award. The UHMS award is awarded annually and is
sponsored by an affiliate society, the Japanese Society of
Hyperbaric and Undersea Medicine. It is to
recognize the work of a young medical doctor or
scientist whose performance is consistently outstanding. The
recipient can be either a clinician or researcher practicing
in hyperbaric and/or diving medicine, and must not be older
than 40 years of age. He received the award at the annual
meeting in St. Pete Beach, FL.
It was appropriate then that his wife is also a diver.
Dr. Jorge Dario Gómez
accepting an award
from Laurie B. Gesell, M.D. UHMS
their first anniversary in May of 2010, she has also
excelled in diving. Jennifer learned to dive while working
on cruise ships and took that knowledge to be co-owner of a
dive shop in Thailand. Originally from Canada, she admits
freely that she prefers warm water diving.
He also is a world traveler, lending medical assistance in
times of disaster. Before his current position he was part
of a Medical Volunteer Tsunami relief effort in Walhi/Aceh
In 2005 Dr. Gómez was appointed to his current position. He
is the Medical Liaison and Medical Hotline Director for
México and Insular Caribbean Divers Alert Network (DAN)
America. He supervises the hyperbaric treatment of DAN
He is also responsible for planning, developing, coordinating
and implementing DAN medical research and training opportunities
in the Maya Riviera.
And if that isn’t enough he reviews the translation of relevant
materials for the region. What is relevant changes, as his
research continues on hyperbaric medicine.
On Cozumel Island
Dr. Dario Gómez with his wife Jennifer (center) meets
with Legends of Diving contributors (from left) Tom Briggle,
Sherry Lantz, and Linda Briggle (right).