British expat Stephen Vine describes his experience as nothing short of a miracle. Around two months ago, what started as a slight hearing problem became total deafness in his right ear in a less than 10 days.
“I was totally deaf in one ear, the sudden hearing loss was scary and frustrating. I was not sure if I would ever be able to hear again,” Vine told XPRESS.
The 64-year-old business owner was told he stood a risk of long-term damage to his hearing if the recovery was not immediate. And what happened soon after was nothing short of a miracle, he says. “I went for this therapy and within five sessions, I could start hearing and within 10 days my hearing was restored,” he said.
“His treatment involved giving 100 per cent oxygen at higher than normal pressure, which increased the oxygen flow in perilymph fluid. The fluid supplied oxygen to the hearing cells and led to fast healing,” explained Dr Ekta Anandani, Centre Physician for Innovative Healing Systems, which uses Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy.
The adjunctive therapy promises to heal incurable diabetic foot wounds, sudden hearing loss, bone infections and even effects of post cancer radiation.
“The therapy can help several types of patients. Sometimes when new tissue cannot be formed, like in diabetic foot patients, we have witnessed healing of the tissue and also it starts to make new fibres. In normal situation, a person can absorb only 21 per cent oxygen but in the therapy 100 per cent oxygen is given in a pressurized environment,” explained Sujit Kumbhani, Chief Operating Officer of IHS.
HBOT stimulates formation of blood vessels, collagen in areas that were previously resistant due to lack of oxygen, activates White Blood Corpusles (WBCs), promoting resistance to infection and healing wounds.
One of the cases the clinic healed was a patient with Burgers Disease. “He had a foot amputated and developed a wound. Due to poor circulation, the wound was not healing. It took him about 20 sessions to heal and he is ready to get a prosthetic foot now,” said Dr Ekta.
“Administering 100 per cent oxygen not only facilitates healing, patients tend to get many other benefits, they have reported an overall improvement in general health and skin as well.”
A typical HBOT treatment involves administering oxygen to the patient in a large acrylic-hulled cylindrical chamber. “The fist few minutes one may feel a little warm, the temperature is adjusted and they just have to lie down and can relax, watch television. Normally a session lasts between 90 minutes and 120 minutes, a patient could need anything between 10 -50 sessions” said Kumbhani.
He said the clinic is in talks with insurance companies to include it in their list so more people can benefit. A single session costs around Dh 2,000.