What is Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy?
Hyperbaric Oxygen is a therapeutic method of safely delivering high doses of oxygen to the body. HBOT is used to treat conditions where oxygen is in critical need and this requirement is not being met. In most cases a series of individual treatments will be required. During treatments the patient breathes 100% oxygen through a mask or hood while inside a pressurized chamber. Our state-of-the-art multiplace chamber has the ability to treat three patients simultaneously with a care-provider accompanying each patient when necessary.
Normally, oxygen is almost exclusively carried by red blood cells. During HBO therapy, there is a substantial increase in the amount of oxygen carried in all body fluids including plasma, cerebrospinal fluid, lymph, and intracellular fluids. This allows increased oxygen levels even in areas with poor or compromised blood supply as well as in areas of tissue damage. Increasing tissue oxygen levels produces several important long term therapeutic benefits including enhanced growth of new blood vessels, increased ability of white blood cells to destroy bacteria and remove toxins, increase growth of fibroblasts (cells involved in wound healing), and enhanced metabolic activity of previously marginally functioning cells including brain neurons.
Patients receiving hyperbaric oxygen therapy enter a 2-person clear acrylic chamber where they breathe 100% oxygen delivered to the chamber under increased atmospheric pressure. During the treatments, which typically last 1 to 2 hours, patients relax, read, watch television, or sleep while they are carefully monitored by highly trained technicians with whom they can communicate easily through an intercom system. Hyperbaric oxygen treatments are safe and painless, although approximately 5% of patients (typically those who report ear pain with flying) may experience mild ear discomfort.
A therapeutic approach to promoting healing with oxygen
Our facility was constructed to comply with local, provincial and industry requirements for fire protection and our chamber is constructed to ASME-PVHO standards.
The pressure inside the chamber causes the oxygen you breathe to be dissolved at greater levels in your blood and tissue, the same way pressure causes carbon dioxide to be dissolved in soft drinks. The net effect is to deliver oxygen to tissues, muscles and bones in critical need. The pressure drives the oxygen into “desired tissue” to treat diseases and conditions that improve with the application of oxygen. The effect of oxygen is to grow new blood vessels if needed, reduce swelling and make the immune system function more effectively. When properly timed HBOT has been shown to be a powerful inhibiter of reperfusion injury, which is the injury that occurs in tissue deprived of blood supply when blood flow is resumed.
In the therapeutic administration of HBOT, treatments are usually delivered at a frequency of 1-2 times per day. In most cases treatments last 60-90 minutes depending on the diagnosis.
Why Consider Hyperbaric Oxygen for your Child with Cerebral Palsy?
Patient in treatmentHyperbaric oxygen is a safe, effective treatment that has been used for almost 200 years to effectively treat a number of conditions which have failed to respond to “traditional” medicine.
In numerous studies, HBO has demonstrated statistically significant, predictable changes in children with Cerebral Palsy.
Changes Seen Consistently in Scientific Studies:
- Improvements in gross motor function
- Improvements in fine motor function
- Significant reduction in spasticity.
- Reduction in custodial care time
- Improvement in cognition
- Improvement in the receptiveness to therapeutic interventions
Are the changes permanent? Many are, the improvements in quality of life are usually apparent. The consistency of the response of patients with Cerebral Palsy regardless of age has been shown to be quite impressive even to the greatest skeptics.
Investigators from Quebec have compared hyperbarics against other therapeutic interventions for CP and found the results achieved through Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy are 300-400% more effective than other more traditional approaches to the treatment of this condition.
The response of individuals with CP has resulted in the expansion in the use of HBO to treat other neurological conditions and injuries.
How does it work? At this time, the specific reason for the impressive changes seen in using HBO for neurological conditions is a matter of discussion for academics.
Scientific investigations have demonstrated:
- HBO mobilizes human stem cells from bone marrow.
- HBO causes new blood vessels to form so that oxygen can be delivered to areas of the brain that have been injured. This new level of oxygen can restore function to viable neurons with minimized blood flow.
- HBO conveys neuroprotection when applied early in treatment.
- HBO can enhance detox regimes within the body
If you have questions concerning the use, application, or rationale for the use of hyperbaric oxygen and how it could possibly help you or a loved one you know. Please contact Island Hyperbaric Centre at 514-453-7978 or toll free at 866-677-7978.
Contact us to learn more about the benefits of Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy.