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NSF0927
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26 Sep 2011, 1:18 pm

Hello Everyone,

I would like to help clear up some questions and concerns about Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy for Autism and any other condition treatable with HBOT.

I have read through many posts on the forum and some were positive, some negative and some undecided.

As a medical graduate and certified hyperbaric technologist (CHT) I have treated many children with Autism and have seen some great results. HBOT is not for everyone and we have very strict rules about our chambers, pressures and treatment protocols to ensure the safety of everyone treated. Please be aware that there are many sham HBOT treatments out there, being run with unsafe, non effective equipment and untrained/uncertified staff.

I also agree strongly with the fact that HBOT is by no means a cure for Autism. It is simply a treatment which can help with some major symptoms and can help improve the quality of life of many young boys and girls with Autism.

If you have questions or comments please feel free to post :)



MotherKnowsBest
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26 Sep 2011, 1:22 pm

What do you mean by 'great results'?



oddone
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26 Sep 2011, 1:55 pm

Hello NSF0927

I'm a diver. I've never needed recompression for decompression illness, but I've done a planned pot dive to 50m (on chamber air, we giggled a lot). We were brought up to 20m and switched to oxygen by BIBS mask for decompression. I had no idea that hyperbaric oxygen could be used to treat autism - is it recognised by medical insurers in the US and by the NHS in the UK? Is it only useful for children, or for adults as well? What effect do you think my oxygen exposure through diving (much lower partial pressures than are achievable in a chamber obviously) could have on my autism? What depths and profiles are you using? How are you administering oxygen to autistic children - I imagine a BIBS mask would be problematic, a hood maybe less so. And what sorts of results are you achieving? Is there any possibility of placebo effect - improvement being due to the chamber environment rather than exposure to hyperbaric oxygen?

Enough questions from me! :D



NSF0927
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26 Sep 2011, 1:59 pm

These are the areas in which we/parents/teachers/therapists see the most improvement:

1) Verbal Skills
2) Resistance to change
3) Emotional outbursts/ tantrums
4) Hyperactivity
5) Eye contact.
6) Ability to learn new skills
7) Play and interaction with others (children and adults)

We often see improvements in some but not all areas. We are occasionally told about positive changes that we may not be looking for. The treatment outcome is dependent on age of the child and their place on the spectrum.

Parents should not expect miracles, but many small changes that become important overall gains.



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26 Sep 2011, 2:13 pm

Hyperbaric O2 sounds like a bad idea to me, I know that a high partial preasure of O2 rots the lungs, eyes and the CNS and is not good for you.

I know it can fix CO poisoning but I do not think that it will "cure" autism


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Fnord
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26 Sep 2011, 2:20 pm

NSF0927,

Please provide links to medical trials that support your claims.

What is the name of the medical degree that you hold, and what university conferred it upon you?

Thank you,

-Fnord-


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oddone
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26 Sep 2011, 2:22 pm

There's a paper on their website here - http://www.underpressurehbot.ca/autism.html - but it's not clear if it has been accepted by a peer reviewed journal.



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26 Sep 2011, 3:13 pm

I have seen something odd which I think one of the life sciences aspies needs to look into.

The web site claims that "The anti-inflammatory effects of HBOT may make it one of the safest and most effective ways to help resolve the debilitating effects of autism" but I see a problem.

Ignore for a moment the fact that autism has not been linked to inflammation. Hyperbaric oxygen is likely to promote lipid oxidation and other free radical processes. I have just seen that W.H. Han et. al. have published a paper in which they show that low valent sulphur compounds reduce the inflammation in the lungs of mice which are exposed to tobacco smoke. This suggests that inflammation is due to oxidísing species which suggests to me that hyperbaric oxygen will make inflammation worse.

See

Antioxidants & Redox Signaling, 2011, volume 15, issue 8, pages 2121-2134.


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NSF0927
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26 Sep 2011, 5:37 pm

Hello oddone,

Here are some answers for you:)

Is it recognised by medical insurers in the US and by the NHS in the UK? It is not covered by insurers. Our clinic is up in Canada and we have some private benefits packages that have covered a portion of the treatments.

Is it only useful for children, or for adults as well? From what research and hyperbaric protocols tell us it is most useful for children before the age of puberty. Preferably between the ages of 2-9 yrs.

What effect do you think my oxygen exposure through diving (much lower partial pressures than are achievable in a chamber obviously) could have on my autism? Autism treatments using HBOT are conducted 3-5 days per week using 100% O2 and pressures between 1.5 -1.75 ATA ( about 16-25 feet of seawater) If the treatments are not done close together, the effects are negligible.

What depths and profiles are you using? The depths are stated above. The dives are typically 90 minutes in length, 15 min for compression (done very slowly) 60 min at treatment pressure and then 15 min decompression.

How are you administering oxygen to autistic children - I imagine a BIBS mask would be problematic, a hood maybe less so. And what sorts of results are you achieving? We are using 4 state of the art medical grade 36 inch diameter Sechrist monoplace chambers. They are essentially clear chambers to prevent confinement anxiety and are completely filled with oxygen. So there are no masks or hoods needed :) this makes it very easy to treat children. Each chamber is also equipped with a flat screen monitor with a hard drive full of movies to entertain them.

Is there any possibility of placebo effect - improvement being due to the chamber environment rather than exposure to hyperbaric oxygen? In most cases the child is too young to be aware of the desired effects of the treatment. They are simply watching a movie. Occasionally the parents look to hard to find a result early on.

I hope I answered your questions accordingly.

All the best



NSF0927
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26 Sep 2011, 5:56 pm

Woodpecker wrote:
Hyperbaric O2 sounds like a bad idea to me, I know that a high partial preasure of O2 rots the lungs, eyes and the CNS and is not good for you.

I know it can fix CO poisoning but I do not think that it will "cure" autism



Hello Woodpecker,


You are right that very high partial pressures of O2 can cause pulmonary and CNS toxicity if someone is exposed for many hours. It is now generally accepted that oxygen toxicity occurs after 3 hours of exposure at 3 ATA ( atmospheres absolute).

The majority of the patients being treated for conditions other that Autism are treated at around 2.4 ATA and for only 1.5 hours. Autism is treated at a lower pressure (1.5-1.75 ATA) therefor there is no risk of O2 toxicity in these cases.

Also, if anyone claims that they are providing a "cure" for autism then they are misleading the public. HBOT has been shown to help with some aspects of Autism, but it is by no means a "cure".

O2 toxicity is more of an issue when divers are being treated for "the bends" when higher pressures and longer treatment times are required.



NSF0927
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26 Sep 2011, 6:42 pm

Fnord wrote:
NSF0927,

Please provide links to medical trials that support your claims.

What is the name of the medical degree that you hold, and what university conferred it upon you?

Thank you,

-Fnord-


Hello Fnord,

I have posted some studies for you regarding HBOT results.

I have a degree in Medicine (MD) graduating cum laude from Semmelweis University in Budapest Hungary from their International Program. I completed my certification in Hyperbaric Medical Team Training at the Nix Medical Center in San Antonio Texas.



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26 Sep 2011, 7:06 pm

NSF0927 wrote:
I have posted some studies for you regarding HBOT results.

Where? I see no such links in this thread.

More Questions

1. Is there a reasonable method of operation? Reasonable entails a method of operation that is supported by known and documented biological pathways, as well as known and verifiable principles of medical science.

2. Has this therapy found widespread application by physicians in civilized, "First-World" countries? There are many purported treatments that either fail to be demonstrated as effective or that fail to remain in general practice for any great length of time. Most medical treatments have a body of published results (in medical peer-review journals) supporting their use, and thus in most instance gain wide-spread acceptance.

3. Is this therapy published in any major peer-review medical journal? Any worth-while treatment will be tested and the results submitted to a medical journal. While merely being published does not provide evidence, it is the peer-review aspect that tends to validate a claim; and while there are trade publications for alternative treatments, there is little or no peer-review of any submitted work in many "alternative" journals.

4. Do claims for the efficacy of this treatment rely upon testimonials rather than peer-review? Belief proves nothing, and mere statements of subjective interpretations (a.k.a., opinions) fall into the category of subjective belief. Just because "a lot of people" believe thus-and-such a claim, their belief does not validate the claim.

5. Are the results in agreement with the current body of experimental, published, and peer-reviewed results? Reproducibility is part of the gold standard. A lone result that stands in conflict to the larger body of evidence is always more likely to be in error.


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purpose of diplomacy is to prolong a crisis.”

— Leonard Nimoy as Mr. Spock, in the Star Trek
episode "The Mark of Gideon" (ep. 3-16, 1969)


KathySilverstein
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27 Sep 2011, 1:15 am

I appreciate the original poster sharing this information. I have heard much about HBOT, and would try it myself if it weren't so expensive. I am sure it helps some people and not others,no therapy helps everyone. I did have a friend once who swore by it for her autistic child, though. Well, friend of a friend.


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27 Sep 2011, 1:49 am

Fnord wrote:
NSF0927 wrote:
I have posted some studies for you regarding HBOT results.

Where? I see no such links in this thread.

More Questions

1. Is there a reasonable method of operation? Reasonable entails a method of operation that is supported by known and documented biological pathways, as well as known and verifiable principles of medical science.

2. Has this therapy found widespread application by physicians in civilized, "First-World" countries? There are many purported treatments that either fail to be demonstrated as effective or that fail to remain in general practice for any great length of time. Most medical treatments have a body of published results (in medical peer-review journals) supporting their use, and thus in most instance gain wide-spread acceptance.

3. Is this therapy published in any major peer-review medical journal? Any worth-while treatment will be tested and the results submitted to a medical journal. While merely being published does not provide evidence, it is the peer-review aspect that tends to validate a claim; and while there are trade publications for alternative treatments, there is little or no peer-review of any submitted work in many "alternative" journals.

4. Do claims for the efficacy of this treatment rely upon testimonials rather than peer-review? Belief proves nothing, and mere statements of subjective interpretations (a.k.a., opinions) fall into the category of subjective belief. Just because "a lot of people" believe thus-and-such a claim, their belief does not validate the claim.

5. Are the results in agreement with the current body of experimental, published, and peer-reviewed results? Reproducibility is part of the gold standard. A lone result that stands in conflict to the larger body of evidence is always more likely to be in error.


Who do you work for?

I think your heroes of medicine decided it was fridge mother syndrome (again)

Why push a broken and failed agenda? Just because its the top of the pile and got media in its pocket?



oddone
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27 Sep 2011, 5:51 am

NSF0927 wrote:
Autism treatments using HBOT are conducted 3-5 days per week using 100% O2 and pressures between 1.5 -1.75 ATA ( about 16-25 feet of seawater) If the treatments are not done close together, the effects are negligible.

The dives are typically 90 minutes in length, 15 min for compression (done very slowly) 60 min at treatment pressure and then 15 min decompression.

Interesting. This is shallower and much shorter than used for the treatment of decompression illness in divers, although a diver with DCI would typically only require one or two treatments.

I must admit I am sceptical about the value of hyperbaric oxygen as treatment for autism. Is there any research in peer reviewed literature?