Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy : Uses and Restrictions

We have heard that when a deep sea diver comes up too fast from great depths, then gasses dissolved into his blood under pressure start to bubble out of solution, causing air embolus, that causes severe pain and may even cause death. These divers are immediately placed inside a pressure chamber or hyperbaric oxygen chambers where air pressure is kept at deep sea level, and then released slowly to enable gasses to dissolve out harmlessly and out of lungs. These HBOT chambers are now being used therapeutically in Multiple Sclerosis, and now in cerebral Palsy and autism treatments.

Are there any restrictions on who can take part in the hyperbaric therapy?

  • There are a few restrictions in getting hyperbaric oxygen treatment, e.g. those with certain medical conditions or being pregnant should not take part. The most important thing to stress is that before anything like this is undertaken, consult with the child’s doctor first (provided the doctor himself is well trained in HBOT therapy). He/she should then be able to warn of any problems they can foresee.
  • Once treatment is underway in the hyperbaric chambers , common sense is really the best approach. For example if a child with autism is ill, or has a bad case of the flu etc. just give the therapy a miss for a few days.
  • The above also applies to parents/helpers who will be entering the HBOT chambers. They will probably be required to get a doctor’s letter first.

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