Hyperbaric chambers: Coffin or spa?

Imagine resting in coffin-like chamber, filled with 100 percent oxygen, for nearly two hours. Sounds strange but many of those doing it say it's worth it.

Imagine resting in coffin-like chamber, filled with 100 percent oxygen, for nearly two hours. Sounds strange but many of those doing it say it's worth it.

It's hyperbaric therapy, a treatment that's nearly 100 years old.

"With this device we use 100 percent oxygen and we are able to achieve up to 2.5 times sea level pressure," explained Dr. Henry Prince in Woodbury, NY.

Prince said the chamber works wonders on radiation injuries, severe infections, bone disorders and even neurological disorders like concussions or PTSD.  But be careful: These chambers can be death traps.

"The biggest danger inside a chamber is a spark. So no electronics. No makeup. No deodorant. No fragrance. Essentially, I tell people to go in with what they were born with and we give you a special gown," he said.

Doris Mickowski uses the chamber each day, treating an ulcer on her foot.

After about 70 sessions, her ulcer appears to be healing and she could even avoid amputation.

"Everyone kept telling me it works. Even in the waiting room everyone said it works it works," she said. "You know, I wasn't very hopeful but now I am."

"It helps kill bacteria, but most importantly it brings more oxygen to the wound and allows the production of stem cells and collagen," Prince explained.  "We can heal wounds that would not heal through other circumstances."

The hyperbaric therapy gained fame when it was discovered that Giants player Rashad Jennings slept in one every night. 

His chamber is a little different, described as a "soft chamber," compared with the hard-shell chambers that are FDA approved. 

Prince does not recommend sleeping in chambers unsupervised.

"What happens if the machine breaks? What happens if you’re caught essentially in a plastic bag? There's a concern and we prefer to use FDA equipment that’s supervised."
 

 App Store Get it on Google Play

  • Popular

  • Recent

Stories you may be interested in - includes Advertiser Stories