Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy is a medical treatment in which a patient breathes 100% oxygen while under pressure in a hyperbaric chamber.
Breathing 100% oxygen under pressure dissolves more oxygen in your body’s blood which is then delivered to those areas that are having trouble healing due to the lack of oxygen in the surrounding tissues.
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy allows the patient to breathe 100% oxygen at 2 – 3 times greater than atmospheric pressure and is administered on a daily basis. The result is an increase of 10 – 15 times in plasma oxygen concentration. This increase translates to arterial oxygen values between 1500 and 200 mmHG.
Additionally by forcing more oxygen into the tissue, HBOT encourages the formation of new blood vessels. As these new blood vessels develop, the red blood cells start to flow, delivering even more oxygen to the affected area. This creates the optimal environment for the body’s natural healing process to repair damaged tissue.
What to Expect
- The hyperbaric technician will take your vital sign, listen to your lungs and check your eardrums. If you are a diabetic your blood sugar will be checked as well.
- Once your vitals are assessed, and you are cleared to “Dive” you will go to the changing room and remove ALL clothing and put on our 100% cotton gown. Removing all jewelry, dentures or hearing aids and locking personal effects in your provided locker.
- The treatment is not painful. As the chamber begins to pressurize, you may feel some discomfort in your ears (Much like what you feel in an airplane as it takes off or on a drive up into the mountains). The technician will instruct you in proper equalization techniques.
- Once you’re at treatment pressure, you will remain there for the prescribed period of time ordered by your physician.
- The chamber’s hull is made of clear acrylic, allowing you to see the chamber room and TV.
- At the end of the treatment, the technician will inform you that it is time to decompress or “come up.” As the chamber starts to ascend you will feel the pressure on your ears start to decrease and the temperature in the chamber will cool slightly.
Benefits of HBOT for the cosmetic surgery patient
Patients recovering from cosmetic surgery need to exercise extra care to ensure that tissues receive enough oxygen during the healing process. HBOT in conjunction with cosmetic surgery is an effective way to expedite the healing process and shorten the recuperation time. HBOT accelerates healing in patients undergoing face lifts, laser skin resurfacing, chemical peels, tummy tucks, liposuction, breast reduction or augmentation and many other procedures. After HBOT, circulating stem cells, which are crucial to the repair of injured tissues, increase by eightfold.
Hyperbaric oxygen is a safe way to alter the inflammatory process to help wound healing. It cuts down pain and swelling, inflammation in tissues, and it has an antibacterial effect. Patients who had this therapy in conjunction with their cosmetic surgery seem to have a shorter recuperation period. And scars have been shown to heal better with Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy.
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy works particularly well for patients who have problems with healing. They may have been smokers, they may be diabetic, they may be immunity suppressed, or their incisions may have become infected, etc.
Risks related to the treatment
- Pressure-related trauma to your ear drum
- Non-life-threatening convulsions related to oxygen toxicity
- Post-treatment fatigue