+ Hyperbaric Oxygen Treatment
+ Why choose Hyperbaric Oxygen Treatment at BVSC
BVSC is the only veterinary referral centres offering HBOT in Australia. However, HBOT is a globally recommended and is used to successfully treat humans and animals. At BVSC we surround your pet with our expertise and care to provide our signature specialist care with compassion. HBOT is just another service that adds to our unique all round quality patient care experience at BVSC as we strive to provide the best opportunity for successful treatment.
+ How is HBOT performed?
Our chamber was originally designed for people so it has been specially modified to suit animal care. Your pet will be made comfortable in a specially designed cradle that is then gently inserted into the chamber. Our oxygen generator provides piped oxygen directly into the chamber so your pet does not wear a mask or have any tubes inserted. We gradually increase the pressure within the chamber so the changes are virtually imperceptible to your pet. We know from human experiences that there can be similar ear popping that may be experienced when taking off or landing in an airliner or going up or down a mountain. We can see your pet through the observation windows and if there is any sign of distress we can stop or slow the pressurisation. Your pet can see out of the camber as well and we can talk to your pet via the intercom. We have found that nearly all animals tolerate the procedure so well that they relax and even go to sleep. Each session takes between 45 to 60 minutes and multiple sessions either daily or twice daily are usually prescribed. At the end of the session the pressure is slowly reduced and your pet is gently removed from the chamber.
Patient Patsy is about to undergo hyperbaric oxygen treatment at BVSC post mast cell tumour surgery to assist in the healing of the skin flap.
+ Frequently Asked Questions
+ What is Hyperbaric Oxygen (HBOT) Treatment?
HBOT involves the patient breathing pure oxygen in a pressurised chamber. In our hyperbaric oxygen therapy chamber, the pressure is increased to up to two times higher than normal air pressure. Under these conditions, significantly more oxygen can be transferred to body tissues than would be possible breathing pure oxygen at normal air pressure.
+ How is oxygen ordinarily handled in the body?
When we breathe air at sea level the oxygen is at one atmosphere of pressure and the air is about 21% oxygen. The oxygen in the air that is breathed into the lungs diffuses out of the air through the very thin membranes between the air sacs in the lungs to the fine blood vessels in the lungs (capillaries). Nearly all the oxygen is then attached to a chemical on the red blood cells which are then pumped to the tissues all over the body in the blood. When these red cells reach the capillaries in the tissues the oxygen is released from the chemical on the red cells and the oxygen diffuses to the cells of our tissues and is used in chemical reactions to produce energy and carbon dioxide. The carbon dioxide is transported back to the lungs via the blood and is expelled in the air we breathe out.
+ Why is HBOT performed?
The body's tissues always need an adequate supply of oxygen. When tissue is injured, the demand for oxygen is increased and even more oxygen must be delivered for the cells to survive and repair. In many disease or injury settings the blood supply is inadequate or damaged or there may be too few red blood cells also the blood flow and blood pressure may be reduced so the only way of meeting the immediate oxygen demand is to load the blood with more oxygen directly. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy delivers 100% oxygen (rather than the 21% in room air at sea level) and puts this oxygen at twice the normal pressure (or two atmospheres of pressure which is equivalent to the pressure you would experience at 10 meters under the sea). This results in a large increase in the amount of oxygen in the fluid between the red cells markedly increasing the amount of oxygen blood can carry very quickly without the need to add more red cells. This rapid increase in blood oxygen restores normal levels of blood gases delivering high levels of oxygen to the cells that need it and improves tissue function to promote healing and fight infection.
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is used to treat several disease conditions. Your veterinarian or specialist may suggest hyperbaric oxygen therapy as an ancillary treatment for any one of the following conditions: