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Robert J. and Pamela Morganti Center for Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine

For selected patients with certain types of non-healing wounds, hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) is available at the Robert J. and Pamela Morganti Center for Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine at Danbury Hospital.

“Hyper” means increased and “baric” means pressure. Therefore, hyperbaric treatment is a form of therapy delivered under increased oxygen pressure. Hyperbaric oxygen treatment involves breathing 100% oxygen inside a pressurized chamber. This concentration is five times higher than the normal air we breathe. Because the chamber is pressurized to create 1.5 to 3 times normal atmospheric pressure, oxygen therapy can improve blood circulation and the blood’s ability to deliver oxygen to the body to assist in wound healing and fight certain types of infections.

Hyperbaric oxygen treatment is not a “stand alone” treatment, but rather an “adjunctive” one, meaning that this treatment is meant to complement other forms of treatment, such as surgery, dressing changes and antibiotic therapy. Studies have shown that specialized wound care and hyperbaric oxygen therapy:

  • Accelerates wound healing
  • Reduces the risk for amputation
  • Helps patients avoid hospitalization

Approved Indications for Hyperbaric Oxygen Treatment

At the Robert J. and Pamela Morganti Center for Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine, we use HBOT, when clinically warranted, to treat the following conditions:

  • Diabetic ulcer/woundof the lower extremity in patients who meet specific criteria
  • Chronic refractory osteomyleltis (bone infection)Compromised skin grafts and tissue flaps
  • Acute peripheral arterial insufficiency
  • Osteoradionecrosis (loss of bone from radiation)
  • Crush injuries
  • Soft tissue radionecrosis (non-healing wounds resulting from radiation therapy)
  • Actinomycosis (rare anaerobic bacterial infection)
  • Sudden SensoriNeuro Hearing Loss – per evaluation and referral by an otolaryngologist (ENT)
  • Other Indications as per the Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine Society 

What to Expect

Description of the Procedure

At our Center, we have two state-of-the-art single-person chambers. We will prepare a daily routine/schedule that you will follow during your treatments, including a very detailed orientation with our team of experts. You will lie down on a gurney, which slides into the chamber. A technician will gradually pressurize the chamber with 100% oxygen. You will be able to talk to the technician. While in the chamber, you will be instructed to:

  • Relax and breathe normally. 
  • If your ears pop or you have discomfort, tell the technician.
  • Your technician may adjust the pressure to your comfort, and work with you to clear your ears until you are comfortable.
  • Once the oxygen is at the prescribed treatment level, you are free to sleep, watch TV, or watch a movie.

Possible Complications

If you are planning to have HBOT, your doctor will review a list of possible complications, which may include:

  • Mild discomfort 
  • Nearsightedness (myopia), which can last for weeks or months 
  • Sinus damage, ruptured middle ear, or lung damage 
  • Damage to the ear drum (tympanic membrane) 
  • Oxygen toxicity, which can cause seizures, fluid in the lungs, or respiratory failure 
  • Worsening symptoms or increased risk for lung problems in people with congestive heart failure or lung disease

Resources

For More Information

To locate a doctor who specializes in wound care, use our Find a Doctor online tool or talk to your doctor about Danbury Hospital. For a physician referral, please call us at 1-800-516-3658. We also invite you to visit the patient and visitor information section to learn more about Danbury Hospital.




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