Atrial fibrillation in a commercial diver

Occupational Medicine
Zarqa Taimur, Syed Hussaini


The torpedo ray is a fish with powerful electric organs, which can serve either as predatory tool or defensive weapon. The name comes from the Latin 'torpere', to be stiffened or paralysed, referring to the effect on someone who handles or steps on a living electric ray. To present an unusual case of atrial fibrillation due to electric shocks by the torpedo ray (electric ray). A 42-year-old male commercial diver presented with atrial fibrillation after receiving repeated electric shocks from a torpedo ray while on routine diving operations. Such occurrences are extremely rare and we could find no documented case in the medical literature. Electric current can damage the body by disrupting electric rhythms, inducing muscular spasms and burns. In this case, we report atrial fibrillation in a diver exposed to repeated electric shocks from a torpedo ray.


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