is Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy?
History Of Hyperbaric Oxygen
- In 1662, British Physician and Clergyman Henshaw
first used compressed air in an attempt to treat pulmonary
disease. His first chamber was called the “Domicilium”
Chamber pressure was either raised or lowered with organ
- Illness from pressure change was first recorded in
late 1600’s by physicist and chemist,
- British chemist, Joseph Priestly studied the
“Goodness of Air.” He found that plants produced this previously undefined gas which
animals consumed (Oxygen).
- French Surgeon Fontaine. In 1879, over 20 surgical
procedures were preformed in his unit.
Deep Surgical anesthesia was possible because of its
increased effective percentage
accompanied by a higher oxygen partial pressure which
rendered it safer.
- In 1845, French mining engineer, Triger, described
pressure related limb pain, and paralysis in French caisson
- In 1878, French Physiologist Paul Bert determined the
connection between nitrogen bubbles
and decompression sickness. He made several key gas
discoveries, Including Central Nervous System Oxygen
Toxicity from High Pressure.
- By 1878, Paul Bert had determined the connection
between bends and nitrogen bubbles and showed that pain
could be reversed with recompression.
- In 1908, Haldane published their work along with
three sets of tables of time and depth
schedules. Most dive tables and computers are
currently based on these concepts.
- In 1928, Cummingham built a 64 foot steel hyperbaric
ball with five floors in Cleveland. Later it was scraped for
metal during World War II.
- In 1934, US Naval Submarie Officer, Dr. Albert Behnke
proposed using oxygen plus recompression for Decompression
Sickness, DCS, which was ignored until 1967.
- Later in the 1930’s, Dr Edgar End noticed that draft
horses working for months in the construction tunnels at
pressure died when they were decompressed.
- In Amsterdam Holland, in 1955, Dutch thoracic
surgeon, Dr. Boerma removed the red blood cells from pigs
and found they could survive with oxygen dissolved in plasma
by use of hyperbaric Oxygen. Dr Boerma had a large operating
room-in-a chamber built at the University of Amsterdam.
- In 1961 Dr. Brummelkamp, University of Amsterdam,
Published on the ability of hyperbaric oxygen to inhibit
anaerobes - organisms that live where there is low or no
oxygen, like gangrene.
What is Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy?
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy is a method
of administering pure oxygen at greater than atmospheric
pressure to a patient in order to improve or correct
conditions. Providing pure oxygen in a pressurized chamber
we are able to deliver 10-15 times more oxygen then if
delivered at sea level or at normal atmospheric levels.
Why does HBOT help speed the Healing
Nature has dictated that healing cannot
take place without appropriate oxygen levels in the body’s
tissues. In many cases, such as those involving circulatory
problems, Strokes, anoxic brain injury, and near drowning
just to name a few, adequate oxygen cannot reach the damaged
area and therefore the body’s natural healing process fails
to function properly.Oxygen given with increased pressure
can correct many serious health problems. To provide this
increased pressure one must be within a pressurized room, a
Hyperbaric Oxygen Chamber. Oxygen, given at normal
atmospheric pressure is insufficient to raise tissue oxygen
levels. The answer is to deliver oxygen with a slight
increase in pressure with a chamber to raise the oxygen
tension above the normal red blood cell saturation.
Why is Oxygen so
Oxygen is a colorless, odorless gas that
makes up about 21 percent of the atmosphere. It is essential
to life for two reasons:
- Oxygen is one of the body’s basic building blocks.
All of the body’s major components, water, protein, carbohydrate, and fat
- Oxygen helps bring about certain chemical reactions
within the body that result in energy production. Energy is
needed for functions such as circulation, respiration, and
digestion. Energy is also used to maintain a constant body
If the body is totally deprived of
Oxygen, death results within minutes. A diminished supply of
oxygen causes multiple symptoms, some of which are mental
disturbances, shortness of breath, and rapid pulse, a fall
in blood pressure and cyanosis, a blueness of the skin and
mucous membranes. This results in a marked reduction in all
bodily functions. This condition is known as hypoxia, or
under-oxygenation of the tissues.
How does HBOT force more Oxygen into the bloodstream
Blood is made up of three main
components: white cells that fight infection, red blood
cells that carry oxygen, and plasma, the fluid that carries
both kinds of cells throughout the body. Under normal
circumstances, only the red blood cells carry oxygen.
However, because HBOT forces oxygen into the body under
pressure, Oxygen dissolves into all of the body’s fluids,
including the plasma, the Lymph, the cerebrospinal fluids
surrounding the brain and spinal cord. These fluids can
carry the extra oxygen even to areas where circulation is
poor or blocked, either by trickling past the blockages or
by seeping into the affected area.
This extra oxygen helps in the healing
process and enhances the white blood cells’ ability to fight
infection. It can promote the development of New
Capillaries, the tiny blood vessels that connect arteries to
veins. It also helps the body build new connective tissue.
In addition, HBOT helps the organs function in a normal
As we age, we can lose vital lung
capacity and the ability to effectively obtain adequate
Oxygen. Some disease conditions impair oxygen utilization.
In addition, with injuries or conditions where there is
swelling or edema, this causes pressure within the tissue,
which cuts off circulation flow. For years, conventional
medicine thought of HBOT only as a treatment for
However, this is about to change the
scope of medicine as never before. The Use of HBOT is
becoming increasingly common in general practice as more
doctors become acquainted with new applications. Doctors now
realize that HBOT has other uses, including the treatment of
non-healing wounds, Carbon Monoxide poisoning, various
infections, damage caused by radiation treatments, near-
drowning, near-hanging, brain and nerve disorders,
cardiovascular disorders; and some digestive system
disorders.It is important to realize that, in most cases,
HBOT is best used when combined with other treatments such
as physical therapy and or surgery.
In the USA, the situation stands in
marked contrast with many other countries, where HBOT is
used for a much wider range of conditions. Multiple
Sclerosis patients have banded together in Britain to create
their own network of Hyperbaric Chambers. Centers in China
treat more than 100,000 patients each year for a multitude
of medical conditions.
Hyperbaric Oxygen is very cost effective.
· HBOT is noninvasive.
· HBOT is safe.
works well with other treatments.
More Research is needed in the area of
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy, however, more than this is the
need for an educated public that demands access to this
safe, noninvasive therapy.
Strictly Not To
Smoking, alcohol and chronic coffee consumption decrease
the amount of oxygen that can be transported
by the circulatory system. It is strongly
recommended that clients do not smoke during
the course of their hyperbaric oxygen treatments.
If the patient cannot stop a period of two
hours before and two hours after treatment
must be tobacco free.
Good nutrition is important for healing. Increase
antioxidant levels (vitamin E) and reduce
or eliminate processed food consumption.
Please discuss your medications with your family
physician. Some medications are contra-indicated
during hyperbaric oxygen therapy. If medication
is necessary during your treatment, please
bring them with you so that you can take them
at the correct time. Diabetics may need something
sweet to maintain blood sugar levels during
or just after treatment. HBO may reduce the
need for anticoagulants. If you become ill
with a cold, flu, or have sinus problems,
you may not be able to clear your ears or
your sinuses may cause pain during the pressure
changes in the chamber. Please call the center
at (+603-4043 2510/+603-4043 2523) and discuss
with the Hyperbaric Staff whether you should
cancel your treatments until you are feeling
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