The concept of hyperbaric oxygen therapy is not a new one and has been in existence since as early as 1662 treating divers suffering from decompression sickness (the bends). Over the last 40 years, it has become a treatment modality in the hospital setting for conditions like diabetic wound care and late effects of radiation. Most recently, it has been found to be beneficial in many other conditions and utilized in the office setting for conditions like traumatic brain injuries, fibromyalgia, lyme disease and cancer.
Treatment can be carried out in one of two types of chambers mono place or multi place. The difference between these two chambers is simply in a mono place chamber one patient is treated and in a multi place more than one person can be treated at a time. While the name difference is simple to understand the variations in comfortability and catering of experience can be vastly different. Here at Orlando Hyperbarics we utilize mono place chambers that pressurize on 100% oxygen without requiring a mask and allow us to make the individual as comfortable as possible.
How Does it Help in Healing?
Under normal conditions, oxygen is transported throughout the body by red blood cells. Utilizing a chamber pressured with oxygen at pressures greater than normal atmospheric pressure at sea level . Once under hyperbaric pressure breathing 100% oxygen that oxygen is dissolved into all of the body’s fluids including the plasma, the central nervous system fluids, lymph, and the bone and can be carried to areas where circulation is diminished or blocked.
When air is taken into the lungs and passes into the blood supply, hemoglobin is 95-100 percent saturated with oxygen. However, injury or disease may disrupt that process, depriving tissues and cells of some or all of their required oxygen. Under these circumstances, normal atmospheric pressure is not strong enough to force the required amount of oxygen into the body.
Although the hemoglobin does not absorb much more oxygen, Hyperbaric Oxygen saturates the blood plasma, which comprises the bulk of the blood, with oxygen, thereby increasing delivery to the tissues and cells. Compared to air, which has 21 percent oxygen at 1 ata, 100 percent oxygen at 3 ata causes a 10 to 15-fold increase in plasma oxygen concentration with a resultant increase in tissue oxygenation.
In addition to hyper-oxygenating the blood, oxygen delivered at appropriate pressure greatly enhances the body’s white blood cells ability to kill bacteria and fight infection. It also reduces edema, or fluid accumulation, through vasoconstriction (narrowing of blood vessels), and helps the body lay down wound-repairing connective tissue.