Welcome to the Advocate Lutheran General Hospital Hyperbaric Treatment Center, the largest hyperbaric center in the state. We have been treating individuals with hyperbaric oxygen therapy for 40 years, as one part of an overall approach to an individual's health care. Hyperbaric treatment allows a person to breathe 100% oxygen while inside a pressurized chamber. The increased oxygen and increased pressure put 10 to 20 times more oxygen directly into the body's tissues, which can result in many therapeutic effects.
In 2004, Lutheran General installed a new, state-of-the-art, computer-driven center, with the latest technological breakthroughs. The multiplace facility can provide treatment for 12 patients at a time, with comfortable seating, radio and TV entertainment and interaction with a qualified health professional during the duration of the treatment. The only other hyperbaric locations in Illinois are monoplace (one-person) facilities that require patients to lie in a small isolation chamber during treatment.
How Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Works
The earth's atmosphere constantly exerts pressure on your body. During hyperbaric treatment inside a chamber, the patient breathes oxygen while the pressure exerted on the body is increased two to three times. This increase in pressure dissolves oxygen into the blood and body tissues at a much higher level than you are able to obtain under normal conditions. Oxygen at these increased levels can be beneficial in treating a variety of chronic, as well as emergency disorders.
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is used to treat many health conditions, including:
- diabetic nonhealing wounds
- crush injury, compartment syndrome
- radiation tissue damage
- compromised skin grafts or flaps
- chronic bone infections
- carbon monoxide poisoning
- necrotizing soft tissue infections
- intracranial abscess
- decompression sickness (bends)
- arterial gas embolism
- gas gangrene
There are several ways in which hyperbaric oxygen is effective in treating these disorders. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy increases the oxygen level in irradiated, compromised and chronically infected tissues. This elevated oxygen level stimulates the creation of new small blood vessels and enhances the body's ability to fight local infection. The combination of these factors promotes healing in problem wounds.
How Hyperbaric Treatment is Administered
Lutheran General Hospital uses a multiple chamber, which allows several patients to be treated at one time. Multiplace chambers are pressurized with air while patients breathe oxygen from masks or hoods. Treatments are scheduled daily, Monday through Friday, and each treatment lasts about 2 hours.
The sensation can be compared to that experienced while flying in an airplane. The air pressure changes can cause a patient's ears to have a sense of fullness, which is usually relieved using simple techniques which will be taught to you by an inside staff attendant. During treatment, patients may relax, take a nap, read a book, listen to music or watch TV. The chamber has comfortable seating and air conditioning to enhance your experience.
The chamber environment is oxygen enriched and therefore several guidelines must be followed to prevent fire or any other hazards. You will be given specific instructions prior to your treatment. There are no eating restrictions or requirements. If you are on a special diet, you should continue to follow it. Continue to take all medication as prescribed.
Patients receiving hyperbaric treatment should not use any tobacco products. Tobacco products will cause the blood vessels to narrow, making treatment less beneficial. Hyperbaric treatment will not be started until the patient is smoke-free for at least two weeks. If our staff strongly suspects a patient is smoking during the course of treatment, we reserve the right to discontinue treatment.
Course of Treatment
Treatments are individualized for each patient, based on their diagnosis and their body's response to therapy. The total number of hyperbaric treatments can vary from 20 to 30 treatments to attain maximum benefits. Prior to starting therapy, all patients are evaluated by the Medical Director of the Hyperbaric Treatment Center.
Health Insurance Coverage
Health insurance may cover the cost of some hyperbaric treatments, based on the condition for which the patient is receiving treatment. For more information, contact your health insurance company directly, or visit http://www.uhms.org/reimbursement.htm or www.cms.hhs.gov.
To find out how hyperbaric treatment can benefit you or someone you know, you may contact us via:
If your call is not answered directly, please leave a detailed message and we will respond as soon as possible.
Dan Mazzolini at firstname.lastname@example.org
Our goal is to respond to all e-mail messages in a timely manner.
Advocate Lutheran General Hospital
Respiratory Care Department
Hyperbaric Medical Director
1775 Dempster Street
Park Ridge, IL 60068
The Lutheran General Hospital Hyperbaric Treatment Brochure
To print a PDF copy of our Hyperbaric Treatment Center brochure, click here.