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The HYPERBARIC CHAMBER SYSTEM (HCS), owned by the Philippine Commission on Sports Scuba Diving (PCSSD), an agency under the Department of Tourism, is currently housed at the Lung Center Hyperbaric Medicine Facility and Wound Center located in a separate building within the Lung Center compound. Its use, operation, and maintenance is based on a memorandum of agreement between the Lung Center and PCSSD.

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBO) is defined as breathing 100% oxygen while in an enclosed system pressurised to greater than one atmosphere (sea level). Breathing 100% oxygen at atmospheric pressure or applying topical oxygen without enclosing the entire patient in a pressurised chamber does not produce the same effects and is not recognized as hyperbaric oxygen therapy.

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy delivers oxygen quickly, and in high concentrations, to injured areas systemically. The increased pressure changes the normal cellular respiration process and causes oxygen to dissolve in the plasma. This results in a substantial increase in tissue oxygenation.

The Mechanisms associated with the action of hyperbaric oxygen

  • Hyperoxygenation.

The elevated pressure (1.5 to 3.0 atmospheres) increases the amount of oxygen present in the bloodstream and available to tissues, 10 to 13 times over normal conditions. Hyperbaric oxygen provides immediate support to compromised tissue areas with marginal blood flow. Elevated levels of oxygen can also purge toxins, including carbon monoxide, from the body.

  • Direct Pressure.

Hyperbaric oxygen shrinks the size of gas bubbles so that they may be reabsorbed. Hyperbaric oxygen is important in the treatment of arterial gas embolism and decompression sickness.

  • Vasoconstriction.

Elevated levels of oxygen cause vasoconstriction that leads to a reduced blood flow without significantly affecting tissue oxygenation. Hyperbaric oxygen is used to control compartment pressures in crush injuries and to treat thermal burns.

  • Bactericidial/Bacteriostatic.

Super oxygen saturation of tissue stops the spread of certain toxins and enhances the killing of bacteria. This is important in the treatment of gas gangrene and necrotizing tissue infection.

  • Angiogensis and Neovascularization.

Hyperbaric oxygen promotes the growth of new blood vessels by enriching the area with oxygen-carrying blood. Although decreased oxygen tensions stimulate angiogensis; for it to be effective, there must be an underlying scaffolding of collagen to support it. Overall, therefore, hyperoxygenation stimulates useful angiogensis.

Only the following indications are the approved uses of hyperbaric oxygen therapy (as defined by the Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Committee of the Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine Society or UHMS) in this facility:

Indications
1. Air or Gas Embolism
2. Carbon Monoxide Poisoning with or without cyanide poisoning
3. Clostridial Myositis and Myonecrosis (Gas Gangrene)
4. Crush Injury, Compartment Syndrome and Other Acute Traumatic Ischemias
5. Decompression Sickness
6. Arterial Insufficiencies : Central retinal artery occlusion; Enhancement of healing in selected problem wounds
7. Severe Anemia (when transfusions are not an option)
8. Intracranial Abscess
9. Necrotizing Soft Tissue Infections
10. Osteomyelitis (Refractory)
11. Delayed Radiation Injury (Soft Tissue and Bony Necrosis)
12. Compromised Grafts and Flaps
13. Acute Thermal Burn Injury
14. Idiopathic Sudden Sensorineural Hearing Loss

Patients who undergo hyperbaric oxygen (HBO2) therapy or treatment in the facility shall do so following duly approved Policies and Procedures (5-13-2014).

For inquiries, contact Lung Center of the Philippines Tel no. 924-6101 local 569 or the Philippine Commission on Sports Scuba Diving Tel nos. 524-2242 or 523-8411 local 218.