What is Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT)?
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) is also referred to as: High Dosage Oxygen Therapy (HDOT) Hyperbaric Oxygenation Treatment &, to a lesser extent, High Density Oxygen Therapy.
HBOT refers to breathing 100% oxygen under pressure (in a barochamber – which is like a small room) for one hour, to correct a lack of oxygen in the tissues and cells of the body. It’s important to understand that, on any everyday basis, we are only breathing about 21% oxygen.
Why is pressure necessary? As oxygen is poorly soluble in the blood, it is also necessary to use a higher pressure. The higher pressure acts to help more oxygen to dissolve in the blood, which allows more oxygenated blood to reach the impaired regions and/or body parts – thus helping to aid and/or resolve the health issue.
What exactly does HBOT do? HBOT increases the ability of white blood cells to destroy bacteria, induces greater production of fibroblasts (which are cells that are necessary for wound healing), promotes growth of new blood vessels, and the stimulation of damaged cells, such as brain neurons. This super oxygen saturation of tissue stops the spread of certain toxins and enhances the killing of bacteria, speeding the healing of difficult or antibiotic-resistant infections. That’s why oxygen, administered with increased pressure, can correct many serious health problems and injuries.
What Conditions can HBOT Treat?
Here are a few examples of the conditions that HBOT can treat – please note: this is, by no means, an exhaustive list:
- Multiple Sclerosis (M.S)
- Cerebral Palsy
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Respiratory Diseases
- Circulatory Disorders
- Decompression Illness
- Severe Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
- Brain Trauma
- Sport Injuries
- Smoke Inhalation
- Chronic wounds, burns & some infections
- Diabetic Foot Ulcers
- Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (M.E/C.F.S)
- Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Lyme Disease
- Aids body tissue repair after Radiotherapy Treatment
- Can offset the side effects of Cancer treatment
- Aids wound healing after Reconstructive Surgery
What are the Benefits of HBOT?
Some reported benefits of the treatment include – improvements in the following areas:
- Memory & concentration
- Balance & co-ordination
- Bladder & Bowel control
- Pain, inflammation & stress levels
- Energy levels
- Mood & sense of well being
- Reduction in injury recovery time for professional sports people
- Sleep & sleep quality
In Multiple Sclerosis (M.S) specifically, HBOT can help with the management of symptoms (as specified above) and with long-term regular use, HBOT can help to slow down the progression of symptoms.
What to Expect on Treatment Day?
You will sit in a comfortable chair breathing oxygen via a hood (and seal) or mask, whilst sitting in a barochamber (a pressure chamber – which, again, is like a small room). Barochambers are pressurised up to twice normal atmospheric pressure. The pressure inside the barochamber is increased by using compressed air, and oxygen is provided by a built-in breathing system.
Sessions normally last for about 1 – 1 & 1/2 hours, depending on depth, & many people use this time to relax, read, listen to music or do puzzles/play games.
These sessions are sometimes referred to as ‘dives’.
The oxygen treatment is administered by trained operators.
We offer three depths at this centre: 16.5 feet (which is the shallowest depth, and the depth at which new people will start on) 24 feet and 33 feet (the deepest depth).
How to Obtain HBOT Treatment?
HBOT provided via ‘Huntingdon, Peterborough & Cambridge M.S Therapy Centre’ is a ‘self help’ treatment – which simply means that the person receiving treatment takes the decision to sit in a chamber and to breathe the oxygen.
However, prior to starting a course of HBOT with us, we will require you to obtain acknowledgement of the treatment from your Doctor – we will provide you with the relevant paperwork upon request.
We have a dedicated medical advisor, who we will seek advice from, prior to the commencement of the treatment, to ensure an individualised approach to your condition and treatment.
We usually recommend an initial intensive course of twenty sessions. This is because HBOT, as an intensive course, will effectively deal with any inflammation and infection currently in the body. In addition, oxygen controls over 8000 genes and a course of 20 sessions increases our own stem cells eightfold. Thus, an intensive course will give your body the best initial boost and start to the treatment.
Most people settle into a once per week cycle after this intensive course.
Our Hyperbaric chamber will currently seat up to eight people, & private hire is available.
What Sessions are Available?
You will usually be required to start your course of HBOT at the shallowest depth, which is 16.5ft. These sessions currently run on Tuesday’s at 1.30pm, Wednesday’s at 1.30pm & Thursday’s at 10.30am.
Should you like to progress into a deeper depth, the next depth is 24ft. These sessions run on Monday’s at 10am (excluding bank holidays) Tuesday’s at 12 noon & Thursday’s at 12 noon.
Our deepest depth is 33ft. These sessions run on Monday’s at 12 noon (excluding bank holidays) Tuesday’s at 10am & Thursday’s at 1.30pm.
You will be required to book your session in advance, as it is subject to availability.
We may be able to run additional sessions on other days/times – this will need to be discussed with the Centre Manager, Fiona Arthurs.